ISSF launches responsible tuna fishing guidebooks
The International Seafood Sustainability Foundation (ISSF) has launched its guidebook platform, ISSFguidebooks.org. The site offers virtual manuals that share the latest guidance on responsible tuna fishing operations.
“Data collection and research is one facet of ISSF’s work toward improved sustainability of tuna stocks and the greater marine ecosystem,” said Victor Restrepo, ISSF VP of science. “ISSFguidebooks.org represents the practical application of this information in real-world terms, and is meant for an audience of fishers, observers and other stakeholders on the front lines of tuna fishing — individuals that may have the greatest impact in realizing the goal of sustainable tuna fisheries.”
Along with the newly designed ISSFguidebooks.org, ISSF has released the first edition of its Observer Training Guide, which provides observers on large-scale purse seine tuna vessels an overview of the skills necessary for effective observing, particularly as they pertain to sustainable fishing practices. Although regional or national observer programs will benefit from the guidebooks, the manual is designed to complement rather than substitute such programs. Effective observer coverage is one of the ISSF Conservation Measures, which calls for 100 percent observer coverage for purse seine vessels that fish for tropical tunas.
The guidebook also summarizes other ISSF conservation measures for the management of tropical tuna and bycatch species that vessels are to follow if they intend to sell to ISSF participating companies. In addition, the guide includes sections on purse seine operations, tuna ID, bycatch, scientific sampling and data collection and fisheries management.
ISSFguidebooks.org also presents the existing ISSF Longline Skippers’ Guidebook and Purse Seine Skippers’ Guidebook in an easier-to-use online format with illustrative graphics and videos.
All guides are also available on the site as an ePub and a printable PDF. ISSF is also planning to launch the guidebooks in additional languages.