EII highlights Friend of the Sea in annual report
The Earth Island Institute(EII)’s international monitoring program issued its 2013 annual report on the “dolphin safe” monitoring program, highlighting its partnership with environmental sustainability certification group Friend of the Sea.
The program, which started in the early 1990s, encouraged tuna companies to reduce bycatch of turtles, albatross, shark and other species. The institute said the program has reduced dolphin mortality in the eastern tropical Pacific by 98 percent.
Due to the partnership, Friend of the Sea requires applicants to be approved as dolphin-safe by the institute before they can apply for Friend of the Sea certification.
“The Earth Island Institute’s Dolphin-Safe project has been the precursor project of the sustainable seafood movement,” said Paolo Bray, director of Friend of the Sea and European coordinator of the Dolphin-Safe program. “When the EII started the monitoring program 30 years ago, 'sustainability' was an almost unknown word in the industry.”
David Phillips, the EII’s director, praised the partnership with Friend of the Sea.
“Verifying the dolphin-safe operations of tuna companies around the world has been instrumental for the protection of dolphins and other marine lives as well as providing consumers’ confidence in tuna products,” he said. “The Earth Island Institute fully supports Friend of the Sea and invites Dolphin-Safe companies to join the program.”