Del Pacifico Seafoods has joined a fishery improvement project in its home state of Sinaloa, Mexico.
The FIP, primarily focused on the harvesting of chocolate clam (Megapitaria squalida) in the Altalta-Ensenada lagoon system, was organized in 2019 by the local fishing community, the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), Mexico’s National Commission of Aquaculture and Fisheries (CONAPESCA), the Mexican Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT), local scientific research and civic groups, and Pronatura Noroeste.
“It is our interest as a fishing resource trading company to be part of the FIP and support the lagoon system fishermen to improve their fishing practices so that they are more sustainable and can have access to better marketing channels, in which Del Pacifico Seafoods is an active participant and partner,” Del Pacifico CEO Ruben Castro.
Del PacIfico Seafoods has purchased seafood products harvested from the Altata-Ensenada lagoon system since 2014, and helped shrimpers in Altata Bay achieve Fair Trade certification. Del Pacifico said it had reached an accord with the groups supporting the FIP to expand its coverage to include other bivalve species harvested in the lagoon system.
“This collaboration demonstrates the importance of the chocolate clam FIP and Del Pacifico Seafoods’ commitment to sustainability from the value chain,” Castro told SeafoodSource in an email. “The support of commercial companies favors the advancement of fishing improvement projects and sustainable fishing.”
Castro said Del Pacifico Seafoods will actively participate in management of the pre-assessment of the stocks involved in the FIP, helping to develop markets for the bivalves, promoting best management practices in the fisheries, and other collaboration “that generates environmental, economic, and social benefits to the communities, and maintain[ing] a healthy population of bivalves.”
Martha Rosales, the coordinator of the Sinaloa Program of EDF of Mexico and a member of the FIP working group, welcomed Del Pacifico’s involvement.
“We are very pleased to have a business partner like Del Pacifico Seafoods, a company committed to sustainable fishing and the development of fishing communities in the lagoon system,” she said. “This participation will help promote the commercial value of sustainable fisheries and on the road to sustainability.”
Photo courtesy of EDF of Mexico