KAOHSIUNG, TAIWAN-(April 18, 2022) FCF Co., Ltd. (FCF) and Key Traceability Asia (KT Asia) jointly held two “Sustainability Longline Fisheries” stakeholders meeting for Pacific, Atlantic and Indian fisheries on April 11 and 13 respectively. A total of 50 fishing companies participated in the two days. During the meetings, FCF and KT Asia provided presentations to explain the development of fishery sustainability, certification system and the concept of fishery improvement project (FIP) with participants. Besides, FCF also invited the expert from Taiwan Wild Bird Federation and the scholars from National Taiwan Ocean University to share with suppliers how to effectively minimize and mitigate accidental bycatch of Endangered, Threatened and Protected species (ETP Species), such as seabirds, sharks and sea turtles, from practical and academic aspects, as well as the best practices proposed by international NGOs. FCF hopes that this meeting can effectively assist suppliers to adjust their current practices to reduce negative environmental impacts while developing the fishery economy.
During the meeting, with its long-term experience in sustainable fishery, FCF lead supply chain partners to explore the development of FCF sustainability program, and shared its current progress and findings of in-assessment MSC fishery certification. Besides, FCF introduced the relevant organizations supporting the implementation of the sustainable development, such as the International Fisheries Sustainability Foundation (ISSF) and the Global Dialogue on Seafood Traceability (GDST), hoping to equip suppliers with the necessary skills and knowledge through information sharing. At the same time, FCF not only encouraged its supply chain partners to proactively participate in Fisheries Improvement Project (FIP), but also openly welcome industry to join “Fishtopia”, the FCF’s vision to fishery sustainability, taking action on environmental sustainability and social responsibility.
In addition, FCF urged suppliers to fill out the Supplier Assessment Survey (SAS) of the GDST. The SAS tool helps determine the readiness of FCF supply chain to capture the required Key Data Elements (KDE) to transmit data in GDST-compliant digital format, and ensure the state of traceability practices in the supply chain. FCF also took this opportunity to train the industry to know more about GDST, explaining the methods and tools that can support suppliers to establish an effective traceability system to collect data from vessels, so as to realize the interoperability among seafood traceability system and to help ensure the verifiability of the data those systems contain.
On the other hand, FCF also cooperated with Key Traceability (KT), a fisheries consultancy company founded in the United Kingdom that actively promotes the concept of sustainable fisheries. Daniel Yang, consultant of KT Asia was invited as a speaker to share the development of the “Fishery Improvement Project (FIP)” to the participants during the events, and further explained the progress and compliance status of the three FCF’s ongoing tuna longline FIPs to help the industry understand the current issues faced by each of the three fisheries and the direction they can make an effort.
Scott Pursner, director of international affairs at the Taiwan Wild Bird Federation, also came on the meetings to discuss the method to effectively identify several important species of seabirds and introduce various bycatch mitigation measures to the participants. In his sharing, he pointed out, “While regional fisheries management organizations(RFMOs) have included seabird bycatch mitigation measures as a requirement, the practical implementation of fisheries partners remains key to seabird conservation .”
Two scholars from National Taiwan Ocean University who research on sharks, professor Zhuang and professor Liu, also mentioned, “Unlike seabirds and turtles, sharks are usable bycatch resources. Therefore, how to formulate a sound conservation policy, prohibit the practice of shark finning, ensure the catch logbook is filled out properly, and encourage the use of whole body of bycatch-sharks are all vital issues that should be carefully deliberated.”
Although some suppliers expressed that it’s more and more difficult to operate a fishing company nowadays, they still agreed that the industry needs to keep pace with the times in order to achieve a successful transformation and sustainable development – this is also the core message that the stakeholder meetings want to convey. “It’s not just the sustainable development of marine resources, environmental protection, or the issue of human rights that has arisen in recent years, the fishery industry will face more challenges in the future, and we should start to solve the problems and invest in improvement from now on.” appealed by Mr. Mai, an external consultant of FCF, who has been deeply involved in sustainable issues for many years. FCF also expects the participants to bring important knowledge from these meetings back to their companies, internalizing the concept of environmental and social sustainability into their management teams to create common prosperity and achieve industrial sustainable development.
For more information of FCF FIPs, please refer to following links: