Cornwall sardines net MSC eco-label

 The Marine Stewardship Council on Friday announced that the United Kingdom’s Cornwall sardine fishery passed assessment and has been certified as a sustainable and well-managed fishery.

The fishery, which recently gained European geographic designation as Cornish Sardines, can now use the MSC eco-label on its products.

The Cornish sardine fleet consists of six vessels using ring nets and another 10 vessels deploying drift nets. Boats fish mainly from Newlyn and Mevagissey and stay within six miles of shore. The fishery is managed by the Cornish Sardine Management Association (CSMA).

The sardines caught are significantly larger than the minimum size allowed and are proving popular with restaurants and retailers. Both Marks & Spencer and Seafish helped fund the assessment.

“CSMA members can feel justifiably proud of this certification and the work they have done to achieve it,” said Toby Middleton, MSC’s UK country manager. “I am confident that they will soon start to reap their rewards with interest in the fishery growing in national and international quarters.”

Last week, the South Brittany sardine purse-seine fishery became the latest harvest to earn MSC certification.

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