Tokyo Sustainable Seafood
    Symposium 2018 Report-7

    big-fish

     

    The 7th Tokyo Sustainable Seafood Symposium report is on the break-out sessions that took place in Room C. Globally there are certification labels and rating systems that guarantee and communicate the sustainability of seafood. In Session C-1, we introduced one of those seafood certification eco-label that is gradually spreading in Japan; Session C-2 shared mechanisms that also ensure sustainability that use methods other than certification; and C-3 brought together Japanese and international experts to discuss countermeasures and proposal on combatting the global issues of IUU fisheries.

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    C-1: An Introduction to Global Seafood Certification Schemes

    Herman Wisse
    Managing Director, Global Sustainable Seafood Initiative (GSSI)

    “It may be hard to imagine, but there are approximately 150 seafood eco-labels in the world. GSSI (Global Sustainable Seafood Initiative) operates a global Benchmark Tool to recognize seafood certification schemes that meet the international Guidelines of the FAO of the UN. The GSSI Benchmark Tool provides seafood certification schemes with an opportunity to demonstrate robustness and ability to improve their sustainability in line with the FAO Guidelines. GSSI also promotes improvements in certifications schemes working towards recognition. Currently we have seven certification schemes officially recognized and partner with over 70 companies and more than 10 international agencies and NGOs, including Seafood Legacy, Nissui, JCCU and CGC.”

    Kozo Ishii
    Program Director Japan, Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)

    “MSC certification is recognized worldwide as an institution with high reliability. 359 certified fisheries produce 9.6 million tons annually, accounting for 12% of the global wild capture catch volume. In addition, over 4,000 companies in the world have acquired CoC certification, of which about 200 are from Japan. Currently, MSC products can be purchased at retailers such as AEON, Japanese Consumers’ Co-Operative Union, Co-Op Deli Consumers’ Co-Operative Union, IKEA, Life Supermarket, Maruetsu Supermarket, Beisia Supermarket, Costco, Oishix ra daichi Inc. and Seven & i Holdings. MSC was the first international certification scheme to be recognized by GSSI in the world, a tough 18 month process from application to recognition that consisted of providing information required for the assessment, making revisions of requested matters and responding to numerous comments.”

    Koji Yamamoto
    General Manager, Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC)

    “To put it simply, ASC certification is an aquaculture version of MSC and it is an aquaculture certification scheme that is widely recognized around the world. Although we established our Japanese base of operation in 2017, Japan has the 4th most certified aquaculture farms in the world and will continue to grow domestically with new developments such as the sea bass and sea bream standards. GSSI has recognized ASC with the highest scores among aquaculture certification schemes. Being benchmarked by GSSI is important, but we hope that the features and mechanisms of each scheme can be more understood.”

    Jane Bi
    Asia Business Development Director, Global Aquaculture Alliance (GAA)

    “Best Aquaculture Alliance (BAP) certification is a comprehensive aquaculture certification program operated by Global Aquaculture Alliance (GAA) that provides food safety, environmental sustainability, employee working conditions and animal welfare assurance. In addition to being recognized by GSSI (Global Sustainable Seafood Initiative), BAP is also recognized by GFSI (Global Food Safety Initiative) and GSCP (Global Social Compliance Program). BAP is America’s most well-known seafood certification program and covers hatcheries, feed factories, farms and processing facilities. BAP’s logo consists of three fish making a circle and is business-friendly since it has no label use fee.”

    Susan Marks
    Sustainability and Certification Advisor, the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute (ASMI)

    “Whereas MSC, ASC and BAP are certification programs that are not limited by country or areas, Alaska Responsible Fisheries Management (RFM) certification scheme is a regional program that certifies Alaskan fisheries. Alaska is the largest seafood exporting areas in the world and Japan is a very important market for Alaskan seafood products. Many fisheries in Alaska obtain both RFM and MSC certifications; however, the biggest difference is that MSC has a logo use fee and RFM have no logo use fee as long as a CoC certification is acquired. The RFM logo makes it possible to convey both sustainability and promote the Alaska origin. Alaskan fisheries are tightly managed to prevent overfishing, environmental degradation and pollution.”