Panamanian small pelagics fishery enters next phase of IFFO RS Improver Program
The Panamanian small pelagics fishery improvement project has transitioned into the next step of the IFFO RS Improver Program (IFFO RS IP), according to a release by IFFO RS.
The FIP is now officially in “V2.0” of the standard, meaning the fishery will now have to meet a series of time-bound improvement milestones. The Panamanian pelagic fishery was among the first accepted applicants to the IFFO RS IP program in 2015, and is considered a pioneer of the program by IFFO RS.
“This continued journey of improvement will allow better management of the fishery and enable producers of marine ingredients to demonstrate their commitment towards responsibly sourced raw materials,” IFFO RS wrote in the release.
The IFFO RS IP was created as a way for fisheries that may not meet the full IFFO RS standard to slowly move toward certification by implementing incremental improvements. Once completed, the Panamanian pelagic fishery will be able to apply for the full IFFO RS certification.
“I believe that we owe the progress made to date to the continued dialogue between the government, the industry and NGOs in Panama,” Brian Murtagh, the Panama FIP coordinator from Animalfeeds Inc. said. “We’ve been able to understand each other’s views and then implement measures in the right direction. On its side, the government has approved a new fishing law to clarify definitions of fishing vessel activity and regulate fishing methods. As for us, we have invested in staff training and technical equipment. All these efforts have stimulated a real change from the fishermen, in the interest of the local environment and local communities.”