Julie Kuchepatov, director for seafood at Fair Trade USA, has left the organization, she told IntraFish in what she described as a "sudden" move, alongside two of her seafood division colleagues, Producer Services Senior Manager Rui Bing Zheng and Director, Agriculture & Seafood Producer Services, Ashley Apel.

Kuchepatov has been with the organization almost four years, before which she was senior program manager and Ocean Outcomes and before that at the Wild Salmon Center in Portland, Oregon.

Apel and Zheng have been with Fair Trade for almost 7 years each, both working in various positions across the organization's seafood division.

The losses were part of a 23-person job cut across the organization, Kuchepatov told IntraFish.

In October 2018, Fair Trade Fair USA and the Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) signed a memorandum of understanding to pilot Fair Trade USA’s requirements in some ASC-certified fish farms.

“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,” Kuchepatov said at the time.

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