Dutch plaice, sole fishery gets MSC approval


SeafoodSource staff

Published on
December 19, 2012

The Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) has awarded certification to the North Sea plaice and sole fishermen’s Cooperative Fisheries Organization (CVO), following an assessment of the plaice fishery and its Dover sole bycatch in the Netherlands.

The MSC, together with other environmental advocacy groups, the Dutch government, and fishing industry leaders, signed an agreement in 2008 to develop the North Sea fisheries sustainably.

“Part of a healthy North Sea is responsible resource management with innovative fishing methods,” said CVO Chairman Jaap Hennekeij. “Achieving MSC certification for the fishing methods twinrig, outrig and flyshoot for plaice and sole represents an important step for the cutter fishery towards a full certification of the North Sea fishery.”

More than half of the CVO’s flatfish fishermen use sustainable fishing techniques already, and CVO officials believe that number will only go up over time. In a statement, MSC’s Benelux manager, Nathalie Steins, said demand for sustainable North Sea plaice and sole is going up among European consumers.

"Supermarkets in the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany and Switzerland have been waiting for more sustainable certified plaice for a long time,” Steins said. “In the Netherlands we also see a growing demand for Dover sole from the restaurants. The certification of the CVO will thus clearly be visible in the market.”

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