Mackerel fishery denied MSC certification

An independent certifier has opted to uphold the objection to Marine Stewardship Council certification of the Faeroese mackerel fishery, after facing scrutiny from Marine Scotland, the MSC announced on Wednesday.

The certifier, Det Norske Veritas (DNV), said the Faeroese Pelagic Organization North East Atlantic mackerel fishery could not be certified primarily because the Faeroe Islands failed to reach an agreement on mackerel quotas with Norway and the European Union.

Last December, Marine Scotland objected to DNV’s original scoring of the fishery due to the inability of the Faeroes to come to terms with Norway and the EU.

“Although the decision is not the first certification decision to be altered as a result of an objection, this is the first fishery to have a score lowered below the 60 threshold on a performance indicator, resulting in the fishery not reaching the MSC standard,” said the MSC. The organization has warned at all North East Atlantic mackerel fisheries could lose their certifications if an agreement isn’t reached by next year.

Last year, the Faeroes and Iceland ignited a controversy after setting unilateral mackerel quotas far higher than in previous years. The Faeroes set its 2010 mackerel quota at 85,000 metric tons, more than three times its 2009 mackerel quota. Then, in March, the Faeroes has set its 2011 mackerel quota at 150,000 metric tons.


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