SeafoodSource is closely following the sustainable seafood movement by compiling a regular round-up of sector updates pertaining to eco-certifications.
- The Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) hosted the 2023 Sustainable Seafood Awards on 27 March, 2023, showcasing pioneers in the Australia sustainability sector. ALDI won the MSC Best Sustainable Seafood Supermarket award for its "wide range of everyday affordable and accessible MSC-labeled products and their continued commitment to ocean health;" The MSC Best Sustainable Seafood Product Award went to Austral Fisheries for its Karumba Banana Prawns; and the MSC Best Sustainable Petfood Product Award was given to to Mars Petcare Australia for its DINE Pulled Menu Gravy Indulgence with Tuna.
- The Global Seafood Alliance announced the Ainan Fishery Cooperative Association has become the first facility in Japan to achieve Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) certification. Based in Ehime Prefecture, Japan, the Yasutaka Suisan farm produces red sea bream, which it hopes to export with help from the certification.
- The Papua New Guinea Fishing Industry Association (PNG FIA) celebrated its FISH Standard for Crew celebration at an event on 10 March, 2023, in Port Moresby, attended by officials from the PNG National Fisheries Authority, the PNG Department of Labour and Industry Relations, as well as non-governmental organizations, and fishing companies.
The association received certification for 33 of its fishing vessels in March. FISH Standard for Crew is an accredited, global, third-party certification program providing assurances that labor practices on vessels in certified wild-capture fisheries are using ethical labor practices and provide proper treatment of crews.
“It has been a journey of almost four years. It was not easy,” FIA President Sylvester Pokajam said at the event. “FIA is glad and proud to see our members cooperated with our office to have improved services. Our local PNG national crews and Filipino crews are now getting the benefits of awareness [and] decent working and living conditions onboard, where their welfare and safety are being met.”
Pokajam acknowledged “some issues of performance of recruitment agencies are needed to be reviewed, but it is work in progress.” He asked the government representatives in attendance to ratify ILO Convention 188, which sets labor standards for fisheries workers.
The Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) released a downloadable cookbook in time for the Easter season to highlight responsibly farmed seafood from ASC-certified farms in Australia. The cookbook is free and featuring recipes from Australia-based chefs Mark Olive, Courtney Roulston, John McFadden, Analiese Gregory, Larissa Dominello, Guy Turland, and Manu Feildel, ASC said in a press release.
“The ASC certification is a challenging and rigorous standard that we are proud to have achieved, as it holds us accountable and ensures that we are 'walking the walk' in terms of sustainability. We are committed to continuing to improve and innovate in our farming practices, and to providing delicious and responsible seafood to our customers," ASC Australia Head Duncan Leadbitter said.
- ASC partnered with Blue Ocean Mariculture to exhibit its Hawaiian Kanpachi to guests at the James Beard Foundation’s Taste America event in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.A. on 30 March, 2023.
“By holding these intimate activities in local markets, we are able to share firsthand how responsible aquaculture is transforming the industry. When guests see and savor certified seafood for themselves, they build natural connections from the farm to their plates,” ASC North America’s Marketing Manager Athena Davis said. “Partnering with renowned local seafood advocates like Chef Kiki and Samuels and Son Seafood Co. helps us raise the bar to inform, educate and excite seafood lovers about the value of ASC certification and the importance of verifying where your seafood comes from. We are honored to deliver this message using Blue Ocean Mariculture’s premium Hawaiian Kanpachi straight from Kona’s ocean-blue coast.”
- ASC announced a partnership with Bamboo Sushi, a sustainable sushi restaurant chain headquartered in Portland, Oregon U.S.A.. The "Sea Green, Be Green: The Ceritifed Seafood Experience" partnership will feature ASC-certified products through a kickoff reception, in-restaurant menu, and online educational activities in April in recognition of Earth Month.
“Bamboo Sushi is a pioneer when it comes to responsible seafood and doing things the right way, for the right reasons,” ASC North America’s Marketing Manager Athena Davis said. “Their commitment to transparency in sourcing and trust in ASC’s certification program to deliver responsibly raised seafood that has been verified at the farm level brings the utmost confidence to their customers. That is exactly what we want to showcase as we launch our 2023 promotions this Earth Month.”
-The Global Seafood Alliance announced on 22 March, 2023, Canary Islands-based mollusk and crustacean supplier Remacan Canarias has pledged to source seafood from Best Aquaculture Practices- and Best Seafood Practices-certified producers. Tenerife-based Remacan has operated mollusk and crustacean purification activities and distribution for more than a decade.
Photo courtesy of Bamboo Sushi