Seafish aims to ‘demystify’ certification standards


SeafoodSource staff

Published on
May 29, 2013

Seafish on Thursday announced it launched a new web resource, A Guide to Seafood Standards, to provide information and an online tool to compare and contrast the different certification standards that apply to fish and shellfish supplied in the U.K.

The guide provides detailed information on all the certification schemes currently relevant to seafood. It incorporates an interactive tool that describes how each standard is applied and the criteria used to measure factors such as food safety, environment, animal and social welfare.

The launch of the guide comes after the Marine Stewardship Council’s reclassification of mackerel, just five months after it was removed from the safe to eat list, which is one example of how confusing sustainability ratings can be for consumers and industry.

“As the seafood industry has increased its emphasis on responsible sourcing, many more suppliers are using certification schemes to underline quality and ethical practice,” said Paul Williams, Seafish CEO. “This focus on improvement is great news both for consumers and for our industry, but the proliferation of different schemes can also sometimes be confusing.

“That’s why we set out to create a new web resource to put all the information on the different standards in one place, so that users could better compare their features and benefits. Standards are a vitally important way of certifying performance against set criteria, although as yet there is no statutory requirement for equivalence and the schemes vary in the factors they cover. We hope that by providing more information this new guide will increase understanding of this important facet of our industry and so help to ‘demystify’ the schemes for users.”

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