Both organisations will collaborate in the implementation of a pilot programme in farm centres. (Image: Stock File)
Fair Trade USA and Aquaculture Stewardship Council partner to develop pilot programme
Friday, October 12, 2018, 03:30 (GMT + 9)
Fair Trade USA and the Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to pilot Fair Trade USA’s requirements in some ASC-certified fish farms.
Through this collaboration, the organizations will implement Fair Trade USA’s innovative model of responsible business and conscious consumption in certified fish farms adhering to the robust environmental and social criteria of the ASC standard.
The pilot will also examine how the Fair Trade programme can work as a ladder towards ASC certification within the framework of ASC’s newly formed “Improver Programme.”
“The Capture Fisheries Standard for wild fisheries has been the cornerstone of the Fair Trade seafood program since its inception in 2014, and now thousands of fishermen and workers are reaping its benefits,” said Julie Kuchepatov, Seafood Director of Fair Trade USA.
For his part, Roy van Daatselaar, Producer Support Manager at ASC, highlighted excited the ASC’s remarkable success in driving better performance and accountability through certification.
“ We’ve created the Improver Programme to expand the benefits of the program by helping those farms that are either not ready for, or may not ultimately be interested in, certification to progress their operations and reduce their impacts. Our collaboration will allow producers to both benefit from Fair Trade’s experience in community development and ASC’s comprehensive and scientifically-driven aquaculture certification to deliver efficient pathways for those that choose to seek certification,” pointed out van Daatselaar.
The Fair Trade model enables sustainable livelihoods for fishermen around the world while empowering them to improve their communities via the Community Development Fund – additional income earned for every pound of Fair Trade Certified™ seafood sold.
To date, there are nine Fair Trade Certified seafood supply chains and several more in the pipeline. Fair Trade Certified™ seafood products, such as Indonesian yellowfin tuna, Mexican blue shrimp, Maldivian skipjack tuna, Alaskan salmon, and scallops from New England, are found in more than twenty leading North American retailers, including Safeway, Hy-Vee and Whole Foods Market.
ASC distinguishes fish farms that operate to the highest social and environmental standards. ASC standards are reviewed at regular intervals to ensure that the requirements remain robust, reflecting best global practices.