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SeaWeb Seafood Summit 2017 blog: A different kind of shrimp buyer

IntraFish is reporting from the 2017 Seafood Summit in Seattle. 

Wednesday, June 7, 10:00 am PST

Comparing ASC and BAP

Peter Redmond, former executive with the Global Aquaculture Alliance’s (GAA) Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) certification program, joined the Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC), a competitor of BAP, in May.

Redmond left his job as vice president of market development at BAP last June, following an eight-year stint with the NGO, during which the third-party aquaculture certification program grew tremendously.

IntraFish caught up with Redmond at the SeaWeb Seafood Summit in Seattle on Tuesday and asked him to compare the two aquaculture certification programs. 

-- John Fiorillo

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Tuesday, June 6, 4:00 pm PST

Pay attention to plastics in your seafood

Plastics in the ocean’s food chain are a growing problem and one that could have a greater impact on the seafood industry in the coming years, according to a panel discussion at Tuesday’s SeaWeb Seafood Summit.

Mainstream news reports regularly on ocean garbage and pollution. In the case of plastic, the product can breakdown into microplastics. 

Global plastics production has grown exponentially since the 1960s, reaching 311 million tons produced in 2014, a twentyfold increase. It is expected to reach up to 1.2 billion tons annually by 2050, according to the European Commission, which will release a strategy plan this to address leakages of plastic and microplastics into the environment.

It’s not clear from where microplastics and the even smaller microfibers are entering the ocean environment, but clothing is considered a primary source. Washing the clothes can release these fibers into the environment.

These fibers get into the food chain at the most base level – zooplankton – and up the chain from there.

“Plastic is found in pretty much every organism we looked at, in every organism throughout the food chain from micro-organisms to the biggest sea creatures,” said Sarah Dudas, a biology professorat Vancouver Island University.

Dudas is working with shellfish growers in Canada to measure how micropolastic pollution is impacting the environment in which the shellfish are grown.

You are more likely to be exposed to microplastic in seafood if you are eating bivalve shellfish such as clams, oysters, mussels etc. It is less likely you will encounter microplastics in the flesh of fish, said Peter Ross, director of the Ocean Pollution Research Program at the Vancouver Aquarium.

Guy Dean, chief sustainability officer for Albion Farms and Fisheries said the issue of microplastics does not yet appear to be on the seafood industry’s radar.

“I don’t think our industry is the primary culprit in the release of those plastic but it impacts us so much. I just don’t want to give the consumer another reason not bot buy seafood. That’s why everybody should be concerned,” he said.

-- John Fiorillo

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Tuesday, June 6, 2:41 pm PST

Tricking retailers into sustainable choices

Because retailers work toward profitability it’s at times difficult to get them to drop unsustainable but popular seafood items, Claire Li, western account representative at Canada’s Ocean Wise, said.

To overcome that challenge, Ocean Wise -- which started its sustainable seafood program in 2015 and is based on ‘buy’ or ‘not buy’ -- is asking to add a sustainable rated option next to the unsustainable choice, publicize the move and then measure the sales difference after a year or so.

That usually works, Li said.

--Elisabeth Fischer

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Tuesday, June 6, 2:30 pm PST

The challenges of Chinese FIPs

The efforts to improve the sustainability of the Taiwan Strait Zhangzhou red swimming crab fishery through a collaborative fishery improvement project (FIP) have come a long way, according to Songlin Wang of NGO Ocean Outcomes.

Some 60,000 metric tons of swimming crab is landed in the region each year, around 70 percent red swimming crab.

The project has been a true example of private and NGO collaboration, Wang said.

National Fisheries Institute's (NFI) Crab Council was onboard early, together with Ocean Outcomes, CAPPMA and other groups.

"There was great interest in trying to make this fishery more sustainable for the long term," Wang said.

When assessing how to improve the fishery -- a process that began in 2012 with data gathering -- the groups found a range of problems. From increasingly smaller crabs to lower biomass to non-selective bottom trawls to a lack of data, there is a lot to do, Wang said.

The groups see huge potential by engaging both local and international groups, and are encouraged by two Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) pre-assessments that indicate the fishery can eventually reach certification.

The proposed project plan has a timeline of around 10 years, but that careful effort will pay off, Wang said.

--Drew Cherry

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Tuesday, June 6, 2:22 pm PST

And the work continues...

While there have been some achievements with the sustainable seafood movement in Canada, there’s still only 11 percent of Canadian fish and seafood ranked as ‘best choice’ by Seafood Watch, Kurtis Hayne, market analyst at SeaChoice, said.

Eighteen percent are on the ‘avoid’ list, 49 percent have ‘some concerns’ and 22 percent of seafood is still unranked.

While every major Canadian retailer now has a sustainable seafood policy, and there’s still progress to be seen, SeaChoice hasn’t “seen a large expansion of seafood policies since their initiation,” Hayne said.

Progress is also difficult to quantity, he said, due to a lack of transparency.

--Elisabeth Fischer

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Tuesday, June 6, 2:15 pm PST

ASC making slow but sure progress in China

The Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) is new to the Chinese region, but as the world's largest aquaculture producer, China poses huge challenges and opportunities in certification.

"Aquaculture in China is very complex. One species can be a quite different and independent industry," ASC China Commercial Manager Fang Qing said.

The volume, geography, different production methods, and supply chain structures means there is no real "Chinese aquaculture industry," Qing said.

There are a numer of challenges in ASC's mission to move the sector toward certification -- the first one being a lack of standards.

"Every day I receive lots of [requests] from the industry that say, 'We have heard of ASC, it's a good standard, and I'd like to apply for a certificate,'" Qing said. "But the majority of species are not covered."

Second, Qing said, is the financial challenge for smaller scale companies to afford the certification process.

"Without money, without input, there is no output," Qing said. "I think this is very easy to understand."

One solution ASC is deploying is the use of aquaculture improvement projects (AIP), which allows groups to collaborate with associations to help finance the work. AIP priorities include turbot, abalone, shrimp and tilapia.

The ASC is making progress on standards, and will soon roll out a farmed flatfish standard for the Chinese sector soon.

--Drew Cherry

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Tuesday, June 6, 2:04 pm PST

Lessons learned

UK NGO ClientEarth learned several lessons from its work on the Sustainable Seafood Coalition, Project Lead Sustainable Seafood Katie Miller said.

Launched back in 2011, the program now has 24 members -- including major UK retailers -- signed up, and now covers about 75 percent of fish and seafood sold in the country.

“The process was not easy and it takes time,” Miller said.

Commitment from the top is key, she said, as is continuity in personnel. In addition, “every voice must be heard and every concern must be addressed.”

But in the end, “the impact on the supply chain is huge,” she told the audience.

--Elisabeth Fischer

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Tuesday, June 6, 1:55 pm PST

China's ambitious sustainable fisheries goals

China's stated program for improving the sustainability of its fisheries is impressive -- but with such sizable goals, can the country make it a reality?

China, the largest harvester of wild fish by volume, plans to reduce its total annual landing of marine fisheries to 10 million metric tons by 2020, a 3 million metric ton reduction from 2015, according to He Cui of the China Aquatic Products Processing and Marketing Alliance (CAPPMA).

China also aims to reduce fishing capacity by retiring 20,000 motorized fishing vessels in the coming years, he said.

--Drew Cherry

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Tuesday, June 6, 1:45pm PST

GSSI goes for gold

The Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games has aligned itself with the Global Sustainable Seafood Initiative (GSSI), said Project Manager Herman Wisse.

It’s especially important since Japan is “one of the largest seafood consuming countries in the world,” he added.

Nissui was recently the first Japanese company to join GSSI, and now others are scrambling to get recognition, as well, “in light of the Tokyo Olympic commitment,” he said.

--Avani Nadkarni

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Tuesday, June 6, 12:01 pm PST

Mammal protection act coming hard and fast for world’s fisheries

There was a lot of concern in the audience about the upcoming implementation of the Marine Mammal Protection Act, with fisheries around the world wanting access to the US market expected to comply by January 2022.

650,000 marine mammals die each year from getting caught in nets, said Sarah Uhlemann, international program director, Centre for Biological Diversity, some of which are the world’s most imperiled species.

And as the world’s biggest seafood importer, with half of that wild caught, Uhlemann said this was an important step.

However, with less than five years for fisheries or companies to comply, many in the audience feel the act is unrealistic.

“The time frame is really limited,” said one audience member.

--Rachel Mutter

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Tuesday, June 6, 11:55 am PST

What makes a credible fisheries improvement project (FIP)?

With over 100 FIPs in progress worldwide, FishChoice's Rich Boot gave attendees an overview of fisheryprogress.org, which has set out to help the world answer that question.

By measuring FIPs against a consistent set of criteria -- including 28 indicators that correlate with the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) standard -- FishChoice hopes to give transparency to the progress of FIPs of any level and ambition.

"Not all FIPs are going to [seek] certification," he noted.

While "comprehensive" FIPs are headed that way, "basic" FIPs may simply be seeking to meet some of those indicators.

So far, 52 FIPs are rated on the site, with another 18 in the pipeline.

The group hopes to have all FIPs rated on the site by 2018.

--Drew Cherry

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Tuesday, June 6, 11:41 am PST

We keep littering and littering

Some 640,000 metric tons of fishing gear are lost or abandoned every year in the globe’s oceans, Rich Lincoln of Ocean Outcomes said.

That’s about 10 percent of all marine litter and “probably the highest impact category,” he said, adding the cleanup costs for governments amount to millions of dollars every year.

--Elisabeth Fischer

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Tuesday, June 6, 11:32 am PST

Is e-monitoring the answer to IUU?

You can't manage what you can’t measure, said Mark Zimring, director of the Nature Conservancy's Indo-Pacific Tuna Program speaking about the potential of electronic monitoring on vessels in this morning’s session on disrupting fisheries.

And with 90 percent of fisheries worldwide without ever having been stock assessed and more than $10 billion (€8.9 billion) estimated to be the annual global loss from IUU fishing, there is a lot going unmeasured.

And there are many issues with human monitoring on vessels, so could electronic monitoring be the solution?

Electronic monitoring today is minimal, said Zimring, but the technology is there.

“These systems are good enough, but there are tremendous gains to be had in terms of volumes and cost,” he said, predicting that the estimated market to be worth $4 billion (€3.5 billion) if scale can be realized and prices lowered.

--Rachel Mutter

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Tuesday, June 6, 11:30 am PST

Collaboration is key to compliance

Fisheries compliance remains an issue that goes unaddressed for too often, according to Bradley Soule, chief fisheries analyst at Ocean Mind.

"There are very few fisheries management plans in the world that take account for possible non-compliance," Soule said.

Fisheries management is complex across the world, and as a result requires collaboration between the private sector and government.

"There is a real gap between how we actually account for these issues, " Soule said.

"One of the great things [is that] we've seen is a lot of interest from retailers, suppliers and harvesting cmopanies engaging in a culture of compliance."

Soule pointed to the North Pacific Fisheries Management Council (NPFMC) as a model for how it should work: industry, science, NGOs and community stakeholders collaborating to manage stocks sustainably both environmentally and economically.

"If you stick with a cat and mouse game [where companies are only going to comply if government catches them]...you're never going to get to sustainability," Soule said.

--Drew Cherry

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Tuesday, June 6, 11:25 am PST

PNA: Taking back control of its tuna

Conceiving the private-public supply partnership Pacifical back in 2011 has allowed eight “small island nations” of the Parties to the Nauru Agreement (PNA) to become “large ocean states,” Cynthia Asaf, market development manager at Pacifical, said.

The partnership with sustunable was launched with the ultimate goal to obtain MSC certification for skipjack and yellowfin fisheries.

But developing a market for these products to “give back control” to the island states was just as important, Asaf said.

And it has paid off, she said. Today, about 200 million units are available in 26 countries worldwide.

--Elisabeth Fischer

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Tuesday, June 6, 2017 11:15 am PST

Holding companies accountable for sustainability

The newly-created Seafood Stewardship Index plans to launch a report noting how the top 20 to 30 seafood companies compare against relevant sustainable development goals, said the group’s Bas Geerts.

“The result will be a relative comparison, one that is the best, then the second, third and a 20th or 30th,” Geerts said. “It will give credit to leading companies while holding others accountable.”

Out of the 17 UN Sustainability Development Goals, the Seafood Stewardship Index is focusing on seven that Geerts said are most relevant to seafood: No poverty, zero hunger, gender equality, decent work and economic growth, responsible consumption and production, life below water and life on land.

--Avani Nadkarni

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Tuesday, June 6, 11:00 am PST

Yes, we need subsidies

Are subsidies good? Well, sometimes, according to Anastasia Telesetsky, a professor in the Natural Resources and Environmental Law program at the University of Idaho College of Law.

With somewhere between $14 billion (€12.4 billion) and $54 billion (€47.9 billion) spent on fisheries subsidies worldwide, it's an issue that needs addressing urgently, Telesetsky said.

Much of those subsidies are spent on exactly the wrong thing: capacity expansion.

Instead, those subsidies should be deployed on projects that improve sustainable management and improve quality.

Selectivity and bycatch reduction, programs that remove fishing vessels and redeploy vessels, construction and upgrades for new research vessels, and projects that improve issues like under-reporting and discards.

"These should be underwritten by taxpayers," she said. "They don't grow the industry, instead they change the way fishing is done."

All these subsidies aren't simply helping the sustainability of stocks -- they're also improving the economic situation for fishermen and companies involved.

"We need to focus on better quality fishing so we have higher quality products that are receiving better value in the market," Telesetsky said.

That said, it's ultimately the public that is paying for these subsidies that should come out as the winners.

"Subsidies should serve an indirect public good, they're not about redistributing wealth," she said.

--Drew Cherry

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Tuesday, June 6, 10:37 am PST

Using eco-labels to tell the story

Eco-labels and fisheries certification have been controversial in the seafood sector over the years, but regardless of the debate, sustainability has been a major aid to the seafood sector in one tangible way, Seattle-based seafood execs told attendees at the SeaWeb Seafood Summit.

"It's helped tell the Alaska story," Trident Seafoods' Allen Kimball said.

"There's that positive aspect. You look at all the stakeholders, communities, fishermen, processors, marketeers, sellers. The health aspect of this, the purity aspect, the sustainability, renewable. These are all part of the story."

Given the amount of negative press that hits the industry, the industry needs to find any allies it can to get the positive messages out.

"We are poor marketers," Kimball said. "Part of the problem with seafood is we have to be able to educate people about this message, about this story. We have to be able to tell that story better than we have."

--Drew Cherry

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Tuesday, June 6, 10:30 am PST

The benefits of quotas

When asked how harvesting in the Bering Sea has evolved since the 1980s and 90s, the Seattle-based executives on the "Moving Beyond Fisheries Certification" panel at the SeaWeb Seafood Summit were clear: it's night and day.

Since the fisheries were rationalized from the derby-style fishing to a quota system, the industry has improved on nearly every front.

"Times have changed an awful lot," Aleutian Spray's Karl Bratvold said.

The Bering Sea remains "a dangerous place to be," but prior to rationalization and quotas, the race for fish made it even more dangerous and far less efficient.

Trident Seafoods' Allen Kimball agreed.

Innovations since rationalization have moved rapidly, from fishing technology to gear to processing equipment to communications.

An accident at sea used to be a potentially trip-ending incident.

"Now you can have a doctor FaceTime you," Kimball said.

--Drew Cherry

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Tuesday, June 6, 10:27 am PST

A different kind of buyer for a different kind of shrimp

The Asian Seafood Improvement Collaborative (ASIC) is making sustainability standards, such as Seafood Watch yellow or green rating, accessible for small-scale Asian farmers, said Robert Logan Kock, Strategic Purchasing/Responsible Sourcing at Santa Monica Seafood, speaking on this morning’s panel on the sustainable shrimp supply chain.

Blue Apron’s Jo Ehrenreich agreed that programs like this are also expanding the production base for concerned buyers.

Both buyers separate themselves from the commodity market by their commitment to sourcing sustainable product and working with suppliers to push improvement.

“We are committed to working towards Seafood Watch level green across the board, but we don’t want a race to the middle… we’re really excited about pushing for more, for better,” said Ehrenreich.

ASIC is focused on working with producers to differentiate shrimp and with buyers willing to invest and support the costs associated with that improvement, said Peet.

Kock agreed: “It’s not just about cost… Selva shrimp, for example is definitely not cheap, but sales are incredible. There’s definitely a place in the market for higher priced shrimp.”

“We’re not going to go knocking on Walmart’s door with this,” said Peet. “This is about a different kind of buyer who are interested in supporting the costs involved in sustainability.”

--Rachel Mutter

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Tuesday, June 6, 10:17 am PST

Moving into protein

American Seafoods' Richard Draves said the next big shift for the seafood industry is to move beyond simply fish.

"While we're a seafood company, we're really a protein company, and we have the whole fish to work with," he said. "And we're still learning to be a good protein company."

Compared with soy, whey, egg and other proteins, seafood has a long way to go in product development and utilization.

"We're still relatively young, we have a lot to learn," Draves said.

"Our upper management are people that still have roots in fishing industry, and that needs to be integrated so we can bring other skillsets into the company so we can diversify our business."

At some point, "byproducts" from Alaska pollock may even be worth more than some frozen fish products, he said.

"If that happens, I think it's just great, and certainly we'll continue to strive for that reality."

--Drew Cherry

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Tuesday, June 6, 10:15 am PST

The first campaign and the worst campaign

In 1998, the industry launched Give Swordfish a Break, "the first large-scale effort to mobilize US seafood buyers, chefs and consumers in support of fisheries conservation," said IntraFish's John Fiorillo on the transparency panel. 

Ten years later, in 2008, the industry took a step back when the "arguably the most ill-conceived consumer marketing campaign" was born, the Stinky Fish promotion. It "produced a bitter response from the industry and highlighted the dissension between NGOs and seafood companies a decade into the sustainable seafood movement." 

--Avani Nadkarni

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Tuesday, June 6, 10:14 am PST

Sustainable change from the bottom

Jason Clay, senior vice president at WWF, said trying to change consumers is the wrong approach when it comes to a successful sustainability movement.

“If we talk about transformational change than you need to see where the market share is and how you change that market,” he said. “You don’t work with consumers one by one, you work with the companies, and you work with the companies that are not doing it yet.”

Clay said the industry will have to be focusing on initiatives such as Fisheries Improvement Projects (FIPs) and Aquaculture Improvement Projects (AIPs).

“We got to work with the bottom, and not the top, to change the bottom,” he urged. “Whatever is sustainable today it’s not going to be sustainable tomorrow. It’s about continuous improvement.”

Molly Malloy, who leads brand purpose strategy and planning for change agency Futerra, disagreed, saying “you also need to involve consumers -- it doesn’t work without them.”

--Elisabeth Fischer

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Tuesday, June 6, 9:55 am PST

Consumer awareness of eco-labels still low -- also in the US

Consumer awareness of sustainability standards and eco-labels still remains a huge issue, the audience at a breakout session on ‘selling sustainability’ heard this morning.

More than half of US consumers -- 54 percent -- “have never heard of” seafood eco-labels, James Morris of market research firm GlobeScan, said.

“We’ve got a big challenge here,” he said, while presenting some of the findings of a Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)-commissioned global consumer research, conducted by GlobeScan, which spanned 21 countries and was published last year.

Still, eco-labels increase the trust consumers have in seafood products, Morris said.

“But unfortunately they’re not really noticing it when they buy seafood, so there’s a challenge of how to raise this awareness.”

--Elisabeth Fischer

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Monday, June 5, 9:30 pm PST

IPNLF, Indonesia fisheries minister among Seafood Champion Award winners

Non-profit wins international advocacy award for leading significant reform of Indian Ocean tuna fisheries.

Click here to read the full story.

--IntraFish Media

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Monday, June 5, 11:40 am PST

Who is influencing consumers?

In a survey of 1,300 US adults who have purchased seafood in the past six months, and who do at least half of the main shopping for their families, a predictable 49 percent said friends and family have the largest influence on their purchasing habits.

A very close 47 percent, however, said information at grocery stores have the most significant influence on what they choose to buy, said Future of Fish's Marah Hardt.

Forty-one percent said the Internet is what convinces them, and 39 percent said restaurants and chefs drive their choices.

As for what consumers are interested in, a whopping 93 percent said they would like their seafood to be labeled with the date of harvest, 82 percent said health is one of the most important factors, 79 percent said they want to know if its wild-caught or farmed, 77 percent said they want the option to buy "ethical seafood," and 75 percent said taste is king.

Surprisingly, 38 percent also said they are comfortable buying seafood they've never tried before, despite Americans' reputation for not being interested in tasting new seafood.

--Avani Nadkarni

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Monday, June 5, 11:40 am PST

Talk up seafood, and do it fast

Filmmaker Heidi Hanson of Warner Hanson Media, has a unique perspective on the seafood industry, as she's traveled the world speaking with fishermen and other industry members. 

"People are ready and used to having a story attached to our food," Hanson said. "Last time you were at a restaurant, did it say 'beef, chicken and tomato?' No. If we can start giving people some positive stories, we can get them excited." 

Agriculture has done it, she said. A decade ago, there were 1,000 farmer's markets, Hanson said, and now there are 10,000 around the country. But the seafood industry has to move very quickly. 

"There's a real fishermen's fatigue that I hear when I travel and speak with them," she said. "The have committed their resources, they've made the sacrifices, they're doing everything they've been asked in most cases -- now they're at a point where they don't feel like they're recognized." 

--Avani Nadkarni

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Monday, June 5, 11:15 am PST

How do we talk to the consumers?

"How do we go about talking and framing seafood in a way that's more helpful to us?" asked Scott Nichols of Food's Future and a longtime industry insider. 

"We need to look at the way we make decisions," he said. "In making decisions, facts really aren’t all that important. We feel our way to our decisions and decision making is largely emotional and only partly intellectual and this is doubly true with food.”

Seafood's "facts" are good, he said: "It's better for me, it's better for the environment, it's delicious. We can transform 'better for me, better for the environment and delicious' and put them in the context of wellness. We can turn that into a consumer pull of what we're providing them. If you think of trying to do something useful with a rope, it's a lot more useful to do something with that rope if you pull on it versus if you push and we [as an industry] push." 

--Avani Nadkarni

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Monday, June 5, 11:00 am PST

Food industry ahead of curve for transparency

There's a big opportunity for seafood companies willing to be fully transparent about its practices, said Liz Powell of marketing communications firm Edelman. 

Eighty-one percent of consumers want more transparency and authenticity from companies, 94 percent will be more loyal to those companies that are more transparent, and 73 percent are willing to pay more for that, according to Edelman's Trust Barometer survey. 

"The food industry is ahead of the curve when it comes to consumer trust," Powell said, citing companies that voluntarily offer GMO labels. 

Seafood has even more of an advantage, she said, showing grim pictures of how pork, chicken and beef are made in the US, compared to pictures of seafood being caught in the open. 

--Avani Nadkarni

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Monday, June 5, 9:30 am PST

Gaps in industry policy

"One of the obvious gaps [the industry] is not adequately looking at is habitat and water quality," said Cannon Fish's Pete Cannon. "There's a lot of room for improvement around the world." 

The industry needs to band together to do better, he said. 

--Avani Nadkarni

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Monday, June 5, 9:45 am PST

GAA, IFFO join forces

The Global Aquaculture Alliance (GAA) and IFFO have joined forces and funding on a project to improve the understanding of the fisheries of Southeast Asia supplying raw material for fishmeal production.

The study will look at the issues from the perspective of social, economic and environmental sustainability with the aim of identifying where improvements can be prioritized and targeted to enable increasingly responsible supplies of fishmeal. 

This will support change in fisheries management in the region, driving the adoption of certification in the supply chain, which will ultimately support the development of best practice in aquaculture, the groups said.

-- IntraFish Media

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Monday, June 5, 9:30 am PST

Low cost but effective solutions

Walmart is "harnessing digital technology" due to its relatively low cost but high value, said Walmart Senior Vice President and Chief Sustainability Officer Kathleen McLaughlin. 

For example, it's helping create an app that workers can provide reviews and get in touch with each other.

"It's not costly but it should make a big difference," she said. "That's the direction we must go." 

--Avani Nadkarni

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Monday, June 5, 9:15 am PST

How far seafood has come

The industry has come a long way in terms of sustainability since it was reluctant to adopt HAACP standards in the 1990s, said Norpac Fisheries CEO Tom Kraft. 

"It's my opinion that the industry is going to take its place leading the [sustainability] parade, not following the parade," Kraft said. 

--Avani Nadkarni

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Monday, June 5, 8:55 am PST

Walmart 'is disappointed' with Trump's Paris agreement pullout

"The Paris agreement is on our minds a lot at Walmart,"said Walmart Senior Vice President and Chief Sustainability Officer Kathleen McLaughlin. "It's a big deal to the seafood industry." 

She said Walmart "is disappointed" in US President Donald Trump's choice to pull out of the global agreement, but said the industry has to do it's part "to reduce carbon emissions."

--Avani Nadkarni

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Monday, June 5, 8:45 am PST

Walmart's biggest issues

Walmart has five "top issues to address," said Walmart Senior Vice President and Chief Sustainability Officer Kathleen McLaughlin.

Overfishing, IUU fishing, health and safety, forced labor issues and food security are the retail giants main focus in the seafood industry, she said. 

Challenges for them include working with a "very fragmented industry," and dealing with complexities of labor issues. 

--Avani Nadkarni

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Monday, June 5, 8:45 am PST

Walmart applauds industry, NGO collaboration

The Pacific groundfish fishery was considered "a disaster" in 2000, and now it's "considered a success, said Walmart Senior Vice President and Chief Sustainability Officer Kathleen McLaughlin.
Fisheries industry came together with the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) and federal regulators -- a fine example of collaborating to improve the industry, McLaughlin said. 

"This fish is now positively listed by groups like MSC and Seafood Watch," she said. 

--Avani Nadkarni

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