Denmark allocates DKK 110 million to seafood companies meeting sustainability goals; Seafish launches Seafood Carbon Emissions Profiling Tool

Denmark Minister for Food, Agriculture and Fisheries Jacob Jensen
Denmark Minister for Food, Agriculture and Fisheries Jacob Jensen I Photo courtesy of Department of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries
6 Min

SeafoodSource is closely following the sustainable seafood movement by compiling a regular round-up of sector updates about sustainability initiatives and certifications.

- The government of Denmark has allocated DKK 112.8 million (USD 16.4 million, EUR 15.1 million) for projects advancing the country's fishing and aquaculture industry.

Applications have opened under five project funding pools and are available under the Danish Sea, Fisheries, and Aquaculture program. Funds have specifically come out of the Danish Marine, Fisheries, and Aquaculture Program for 2021-2027, which has been co-financed by E.U. funds from the European Marine, Fisheries, and Aquaculture Fund.

“Danish fishing is in a period of upheaval with several challenges ahead. The marine environment is challenged, which creates difficult conditions for several fish stocks – especially in our inland waters,” Denmark Minister for Food, Agriculture, and Fisheries Jacob Jensen said in a release. “We live in a time where it is both expected and a necessity that new green solutions are developed that can reduce the climate footprint and environmental impact in all industries.”

Applicants for the funding must prove they can help Denmark reach its goal of reducing CO2 emissions by 70 percent by 2030 and, by proxy, ensure Denmark is among the leading nations in the green transformation of fishing and aquaculture.

“We must help to support that so that we can develop fishing in a more sustainable direction. Fishing is an important part of our food supply, and at the same time, it contributes to local jobs in waterfront Denmark," Jensen said. "That is why I am also pleased that we are now reopening the support pools so that we can speed up sustainable solutions for both the fishing and aquaculture industries.”

- U.K. non-departmental industry body Seafish launched an online tool designed to support the seafood sector’s response to climate change. 

The tool, titled the Seafood Carbon Emissions Profiling Tool, can help businesses measure and reduce their carbon footprints and contribute to meeting net-zero emissions targets, the company said in a release.

“The Seafood Carbon Emissions Profiling Tool is an important part of our work to support the U.K. seafood sector transition to net-zero,” Seafish Head of Responsible Sourcing Stuart McLanaghan said in a release. “It is aimed at the entire U.K. seafood supply chain, but we envisage that buyers within retail, foodservice, and processing will be among the main users. The tool provides several benefits for industry but will, first and foremost, enable industry to identify carbon footprints for their seafood products and understand the hotspots or risks in their supply chains.” 

Seafood businesses can access the tool's online platform to input supply chain data, such as greenhouse gas emissions associated with processing operations, and receive more sustainable solutions.

- The Global Tuna Alliance launched its Module Complémentaire initiative, designed to provide French retail partners tools to their strengthen sustainability efforts. Through comprehensive surveys of canned tuna sourcing, partners can identify and mitigate potential risks in their supply chains, helping them make decisions and strengthen their sustainability practices.

"French retailers demonstrate their serious commitment to sustainability and set a commendable example for others in the industry,” GTA Executive Director Daniel Suddaby said in a release. “For France, with its Réunion department in the Indian Ocean, it is heartening to see such significant support as we commence our IOTC campaign, ensuring that our collective efforts will lead to meaningful and lasting impacts in tuna conservation."

Les Mousquetaires, Système U, Lidl, and Casino, which comprise more than 40 percent of the food and beverage market share in France, have committed to the program.

- Bangkok, Thailand-based Charoen Pokphand Foods (CP Foods) has launched a new initiative to reduce food loss in its operations and repurpose food waste and byproducts into valuable resources such as animal feed, fertilizer, and alternative energy. The company said it has also enhanced the efficiency of its machinery and equipment in its manufacturing plants.

"CP Foods places significant emphasis on food loss and waste management across our value chain,” CP Foods Head of Corporate Affairs and Investor Relations Kobboon Srichai said. “We leverage technology and innovation not only to prevent and reduce food loss but also to transform waste into valuable resources. In 2023, we effectively managed food loss during production processes and minimized food waste, reclaiming nearly 80 percent for reuse."

CP's aquacultural feed development team has also launched a collaborative project with a fishmeal supplier to integrate byproducts into novel feed raw materials. The product offers a sustainable alternative to imported raw materials.

- The Global Sustainable Seafood Initiative (GSSI) has announced a partnership with ocean ecosystem and sustainability organization FishWise. 

FishWise, headquartered in Santa Cruz, California, U.S.A., provides seafood companies with expertise on how to improve their business practices in a way that catalyzes fisheries and aquaculture improvements. The partnership is working to enforce sustainability for the oceans and people dependent on them, the organizations said in a release.

"FishWise is happy to join GSSI alongside so many impactful partner organizations around the globe,” FishWise Social Responsibility Director Kelley K. Bell said. “We know that engaging with markets is key to improving supply chains, and GSSI is an important avenue for us to advance our work with market actors to promote and protect labor and human rights. We look forward to opportunities for powerful collaboration ahead."

FishWise also announced a partnership with U.S. grocery chain Hy-Vee, publicly releasing data about the grocer’s tuna supply chains. The data is now being run through FishWise’s new risk assessment tool: the Vessel Risk Dashboard.

“Our partnership with FishWise continues to provide us with very valuable information about our seafood supply chain, which we know makes a difference for our customers,” Hy-Vee VP Jason Pride said in a release. “FishWise’s continued efforts, improvements, and insights around vessel name data consistently give us new information to explore as part of our seafood supply chain due diligence strategy.”

- The International Seafood Sustainability Foundation (ISSF) has released a step-by-step guide – the Jelly-FAD Construction Guide – showing commercial tuna fishers how to build fish-aggregating devices (FADs) that utilize almost fully biodegradable and have a non-entangling design.

Approximately 38 percent of the global tuna catch, which totaled 5.2 million metric tons, was hauled in thanks to the use of FADs in 2022, ISSF said.

"The Jelly-FAD Construction Guide shows tuna fishers how to build what we believe is the most sustainable non-entangling FAD to date,” ISSF Senior Scientist Gala Moreno said in a release. “The Jelly-FAD represents a new concept in drifting FADs, whose structure and materials have been relatively static for decades. To make Jelly-FADs, you do not need to have unusual materials, special equipment, or advanced carpentry skills. We intend the Jelly-FAD to be as simple and affordable as possible for fishers around the world to build.”

- The Sustainable Aquaculture Innovation Centre (SAIC) has secured GBP 1.5 million (USD 1.9 million, EUR 1.7 million) to support fish health research and development.

Of the total, GBP 500,000 (USD 635,000, EUR 585,000) is coming from the Scottish Government’s Marine Fund Scotland and GBP 1 million (USD 1.2 million, EUR 1.1 million) of transitional funding from the Scottish Funding Council (SFC) will allow SAIC to improve health and welfare outcomes for farmed fish, according to SAIC. SAIC is also launching a new funding call for businesses and higher-education institutions for projects exclusively focused on finfish health and welfare. 

“SAIC is one of Scotland’s success stories, having played a significant role in supporting innovation and development in aquaculture,” Scotland Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs, Land Reform, and Islands Mairi Gougeon said in a release. “We are now supporting SAIC to move to a refreshed and updated role that will ensure it and Scottish aquaculture have a bright future. The need to make aquaculture sustainable and the rewards for doing so have never been greater nor more urgent.”

- Derio, Spain-based ocean technology company Zunibal launched testing on its floating and submerged FADs. The project, in partnership with the Spain-based AZTI Technology Centre, aims to create biodegradable materials that lead to more sustainable tropical tuna fisheries.

Phase 1 testing has begun in a tropical, semi-controlled environment at IATTC Achotines Laboratory facilities, headquartered in Panama. Real-condition tests are also underway, the organization said in a release, with 210 devices distributed between the Atlantic and Indian oceans to evaluate effectiveness.

“These two designs eliminate or significantly reduce the need for synthetic canvas and raffia, or flotation components such as foam floats (skittles). In this way, by using materials that improve the characteristics of the FAD, we can minimize its impact on the environment,'” AZTI Fishing Expert Iker Zudaire. 

- Vancouver, Canada-based seafood traceability and processing software company ThisFish has relaunched its consumer-tracing app Tally Trace.

The app allows seafood companies to link raw materials to finished products, tracking yields and costs for increased transparency and traceability efforts. The relaunch allows for the addition of images and marketing descriptions of fish species, products, fishing vessels, and more, the company said. 

“More and more consumers are demanding to know where their products come from and that they're socially and environmentally responsible,” This Fish CEO Eric Enno Tamm said. “One way to build trust is to be transparent about the prominence of your products through traceability. Tally Trace is our solution.

The program also provides companies with printable QR labeling systems for consumer use.

- Delft, the Netherlands-based biotechnology research company Veramaris increased its supply of alternative sources for omega-3 EPA and DHA by 50 percent year over year in 2023.

The company has been at the forefront of addressing the market's growing need for sustainable omega-3 EPA & DHA, which has risen in parallel with the global trend toward greater demand for aquaculture and healthy seafood,” the company said in a release. 

A recent environmental report released by the company highlighted that it has also reduced its carbon footprint by 27 percent.

"2023 marks a pivotal year for Veramaris, as we not only achieved a record increase in production volumes but also solidified our market position. We are now poised to scale up sustainably, streamlining our production processes and forging new partnerships," Veramaris CEO Gertjan de Koning said.

- Amersfoort, The Netherlands-based Nutreco announced it is taking a new approach toward sustainability reporting. 

Starting with its 2023 annual report, the feed company will publish sustainability results and case studies more frequently throughout the year on the company’s website. It will also release a concise and compliance-focused report later in 2024, the company said in a release. 

The new initiatives will allow Nutreco to provide its stakeholders with more up-to-date, regular, and timely information about the progress it's making on its sustainability roadmap.

“Teams across Nutreco are putting into action initiatives to ensure that we continue to make progress on emissions reduction,” Nutreco Chief Supply Chain Officer Claudio Cervellati said in a release. “For example, we have decided not to use coal in any of our factories and are installing solar panels across several business units. We are also investing in green electricity and reducing emissions with new and optimized boilers. I'm very proud of our team’s hard work and commitment to helping us achieve our targets."

- Juneau, Alaska, U.S.A.-based Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute (ASMI) has partnered with cruise line Holland America Line to certify the cruise line’s dining and galley team members to better understand fish species, consumption benefits, and responsible fishing practices of the Alaska fishing industry through ASMI’s proprietary Seafood U educational course. 

Approximately 2,500 shipboard team members across six ships will undergo the training.

“We’ve shared the thrill of Alaska’s glaciers and wildlife with our guests for more than 75 years, and supporting sustainable fishing and local business is an important commitment for us,” Holland America Line President Gus Antorcha said in a release. “With this new step, Holland America Line has committed to not only serving fresh, sustainable seafood but ensuring our team has the knowledge to be expert sources to our guests as we cruise Alaska’s waters.”

The Seafood U Training for Holland America Line’s culinary teams began in early 2024, in advance of the 2024 Alaska fishing season. 

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