Indonesian tuna fishery enters Marine Stewardship Council assessment
An Indonesian fish processor and exporter is pursuing Marine Stewardship Council certification for pole-and-line caught yellowfin and skipjack tuna acquired in the Western Central Pacific Ocean, a move that is garnering praise from the International Pole and Line Foundation (IPNLF).
Sorong, Indonesia-based PT Citraraja Ampat Canning (PT CRA) has agreements with approximately 40 locally based fishing vessels that use pole-and-line methods of fishing. The company processes then exports the fish to Europe, Singapore, and Malaysia.
The company has retained a certification assessment body (CAB) to assess the fishery, which produced 2,600 metric tons (MT) of skipjack and 543 MT of yellowfin tuna in 2016. The assessment team will conduct its initial site visit in August 2017, according to IPNLF, which said in a press release that the company’s progress towards the Marine Stewardship Council standard “will provide an invaluable foundation for traditional fishing communities in the Western Central Pacific Ocean.”
“PT CRA is committed to sustainability and very proud to demonstrate this by measuring the Sorong pole-and-line fishery against the MSC standard,” company director Ali said. “This is an exciting moment for PT CRA, our market partners, IPNLF and Indonesia’s pole-and-line tuna fishers.”
If successful, the fishery could be supplying MSC-certified skipjack and yellowfin tuna to international markets by the end of 2018, the IPNLF said.
“Indonesia is the world’s biggest tuna fishing nation and the resource is crucial to the long-term viability of many of the country’s fishing communities. With this announcement, PT Citraraja Ampat Canning is taking a bold step, and will become better placed to capitalize on the growing international demand for sustainable one-by-one caught tuna,” IPNLF Manging Director Martin Purves said. “We look forward to working with them, as well as other IPNLF members, to continue driving meaningful improvements in one-by-one tuna fisheries to secure the long-term sustainability of the resources and the communities that depend on them.”