WWF to Present Draft Standards at Next Pangasius Dialogues

At the World Wildlife Fund's next Aquaculture Dialogues in early December, the environmental advocacy group will present a set of measurable, performance-based standards for pangasius (tra, basa) production.

The WWF standards aim to minimize the primary environmental and social issues associated with farming pangasius, a family of fish species similar to catfish. The Dialogue will be held Dec. 3 and 4 at Can Tho University in Vietnam. After the December meeting, the first draft of the standards will be finalized and posted online for public comment.

"The pangasius Dialogue is a unique platform that gives everybody willing to contribute to the development of standards an opportunity to do so," says Dr. Flavio Corsin, WWF's senior aquaculture advisor and meeting coordinator. "I encourage stakeholders to express their views at the upcoming meeting or during the public comment period so that we end up with standards that can help transform the aquaculture industry."

Dialogue participants include producers, processors, exporters, retailers, input suppliers, government officials, academics, NGO representatives and others interested in pangasius farming.

This will be the third meeting of the Dialogue since the group was created in September 2007. At previous meetings, participants agreed on eight main environmental and social issues, such as water pollution and health management, related to the farming of pangasius.

There are several WWF-initiated Dialogues underway globally. Standards also are being developed for salmon, trout, tilapia, seriola (kampachi, hamachi or hiramasa), cobia, shrimp, abalone and four types of bivalve shellfish. Draft standards for tilapia farming were released in September for public comment and should be finalized in March 2009.

For more information on the next pangasius Dialogue, visit worldwildlife.org/pangasiusdialogue.


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