2017 SeaWeb Seafood Summit packs a sustainable, newsy punch

Published on
June 19, 2017

The 2017 SeaWeb Seafood Summit, which took place 5 to 7 June in Seattle, Washington, U.S.A., brought together more than 580 global representatives of the seafood industry, the conservation community, academia, government, and the media for in-depth discussions, presentations and networking around the issue of sustainable seafood. 

Here’s a review of the news that was made at this year’s summit:

A major topic of discussion at the conference was pre-competitive collaboration, with several panels and keynotes approaching the issues from different angles. In the pre-conference on Sunday, 4 June, attendees heard from Nira Desai, the director of strategy and learning for the World Cocoa, a key player in the development of CocoaAction, a sustainability movement in the cocoa industry:

Cocoa industry offers seafood a crash course in pre-competitive collaboration

Pre-competitive collaboration will also play a key role in the future of global aquaculture, according to experts at the conference:

Success of “blue revolution” will depend heavily on pre-competitive collaboration, seafood experts say

In other big news for aquaculture, on Monday, 5 June, Seafood Watch upgraded farmed salmon certified by the Aquaculture Stewardship Council to its “Good Alternative” rating, marked “a watershed moment for the sustainability credentials of farmed salmon”: 

Seafood Watch upgrades ASC-certified farmed salmon to “Good Alternative”

Later on Monday, 5 June, the 2017 Seafood Champion Awards were handed out at a ceremony in Chihuly Gardens in Seattle. SeafoodSource profiled each of this year’s winners:

Meet the 5 Seafood Champions of 2017

Many nonprofit organizations with a stake in marine and seafood issues took advantage of the platform provided by SeaWeb to announce new partnerships and initaitives.

IFFO, GAA to study fishmeal supply in Southeast Asia 

US, Japan, Spain focus of new Walton Family Foundation markets strategy

SFP initiative aims for 75 percent sustainable seafood globally

Ray Hilborn, others launch I-FIN, a new fisheries data network

Meanwhile, the conference began focusing on impact investment and business-created and –run solutions to improve the sustainability of the seafood industry:

Impact investment looks to push seafood industry toward sustainability

Social issues in the seafood industry took center stage on the last day of the conference, as attendees debated the definition of fair labor standards and discussed the release of a scientific paper that made saves across the seafood industry and beyond: 

Social and human rights abuses on agenda at SeaWeb, UN Oceans Conference

The developing roles that technology and innovation play within the seafood sustainability movement were also a primary focus of the Summit, with different fisheries and analysts discussing several platforms that are curbing bycatch and improving traceability:

Alaska pollock fishery battles salmon bycatch with new technology

Walmart and IBM looking at "blockchain" to radically improve traceability

James Beard Foundation's "Smart Catch" program announces expansion

Finally, the location of next year’s summit, scheduled for 18 to 20 June, 2018, was announced to close the show:

Barcelona selected as site of 2018 SeaWeb Seafood Summit

To review even more news from the conference, here is every story published by SeafoodSource related to the 2017 SeaWeb Seafood Summit:

SeafoodSource’s complete coverage of the 2017 SeaWeb Seafood Summit

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