Eastern Atlantic tuna purse seine FIP launched
A tuna Fishery Improvement Project (FIP) for the Eastern Atlantic Ocean has been formally launched, with the signing of a FIP agreement and approval of an action plan between 17 organisations. The FIP will work towards meeting the fisheries sustainability standard set by the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC).
To meet the MSC standard, fisheries must be managed so that fish stocks remain healthy and impacts on the environment are mitigated. Achieving this standard would therefore provide credible verification of the sustainability of Eastern Atlantic Ocean purse seine tuna fisheries.
The goal of the FIP is to achieve measurable and verifiable improvements in the Eastern Atlantic Ocean purse seine tuna fishery. These improvements, which are implemented over a five year period, will allow the fishery to become fully compliant to the MSC standard. It will utilise the collective power, resources and efforts of the participants to bring about positive improvements to the way the fishery is managed.
The FIP will strive to support the development of robust harvest strategies for tuna, ensure management measures are in place to maintain target and secondary species above biological limits, and provide a framework to manage the ecosystem impacts associated with purse seine fishing.
To formalise the participation on the FIP, an agreement was signed at the Ivorian Ministry of Livestock and Fishery Resources by: AFKO, Agnes Park, AIRONE CÃ´te dâ€™Ivoire, ANABAC & Associates, ATUNSA, CFTO, COSMO, DH Fisheries, FCF, INPESCA , NICRA, ORTHONGEL, PANOFI, Saupiquet Concarneau, SCODI, Sea Breeze Ventures and Thai Union Europe. It is supported by the Republic of Ghana, the Republic of Ivory Coast and WWF-UK.
The range of participants represents the FIPâ€™s spirit of collaboration â€“ which has concentrated the strengths of industry (including fishing fleets and processors), non-governmental organisations with the support and participation of WWF-UK, and the Governments of Ghana and Ivory Coast â€“ to improve the governance of fisheries in the region.
â€œThis exciting collaboration between industry, governments and other stakeholders demonstrates the effectiveness of working across the entire seafood supply chain. SCODI is delighted to be a key industry partner and looks forward to implementing impactful changes to safeguard sustainable fishing in the Eastern Atlantic Oceanâ€œ, said Mohamad Khachab of SCODI.
The FIP will focus on improving the health of fish stocks, minimising impacts on ecosystems, and implementing effective fisheries management strategies. The FIP will cover the catches of skipjack, yellowfin and bigeye tuna from purse seine vessels.
It will also support the recovery plan of the two commercial large tuna species in the region, yellowfin and bigeye tuna as well as ensuring the resolutions and recommendations of the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) are followed and adhered to with regards to the management of skipjack.
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