Alaska pollock industry not worried — yet
By April Forristall, SeafoodSource assistant editor
24 January, 2013
The Alaska pollock industry should not expect to see Marine Stewardship Council certified Russian pollock just yet, according to the At-Sea Processors Association.
Following the recent announcement that Moody Marine has cleared the way for Russia's pollock fishery to receive MSC certification, the APA — client for the MSC certification of Alaska’s pollock fishery — said it’s “premature to say that the certification determination will stand.”
“At APA, we are still reviewing the report on the Sea of Okhotsk pollock fishery,” Jim Gilmore, APA public affairs director, told SeafoodSource. “APA provided comprehensive stakeholder comments on the draft report — as did WWF, whose comments are published in the report. We are evaluating whether the final report, which runs more than 500 pages with appendices, addresses our concerns. We need to digest the report before we can consider next steps.”
Gilmore isn’t concerned yet about the potential impact on demand for MSC-certified Alaska pollock, since the Russian fishery's certification process isn’t complete yet.
“Any stakeholder, including APA, can object to the certification determination. If that happens, an Independent Adjudicator will consider whether the certifier’s decision should stand. Stakeholders have until 12 February to file an objection,” said Gilmore. “The APA has yet to determine whether it will file an objection. We want to be deliberate in studying the final report.
“The Sea of Okhotsk fishery received the lowest possible scores, so if an objection is accepted, there is no margin of error for the fishery.”
24 January, 2013