The Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) has awarded the Fiji Albacore Tuna Long Line fishery its sustainability certification, the fourth tuna fishery in the South Pacific to achieve this. This follows an independent assessment against the MSC’s standard for sustainable and well-managed fisheries.

MSC manager for Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific, Patrick Caleo, is pleased to recognise another tuna fishery with MSC certification.

“The Fiji albacore tuna fishery is the first albacore long line fishery to demonstrate its sustainability credentials with an MSC certification. Tuna is one of the most popular species of fish and now consumers can enjoy verified sustainable albacore from this Fiji fishery,” he said.
Assessment against the MSC standard, which took 18 months to complete, was conducted by the independent, third party certifier, Intertek Moody Marine. In scoring the fishery the assessment team took into consideration overall stock health and management of albacore in the South Pacific, as well as all potential ecosystem impacts attributed to the Fiji fishery. The assessment found the albacore stock to be in a healthy state and the fishery adhering to good management principles, with marginal impact on habitats and non-target species.

The current certificate is valid for five years, during which progress against the conditions set out in the certification requirements will be tracked and available for public review in annual surveillance audits.

The fishery has committed to take action to meet eight conditions to improve some aspects of the fishery up to the international best practice level. This includes ensuring that management of the fishery is improved to establish reference points and a harvest strategy including harvest control rules. The fishery has also implemented a management strategy that ensures the fishery does not slow down the recovery and rebuilding of retained species.

The assessment has been strongly supported by the Fiji Government through the Fisheries Division, especially in ensure appropriate fishery management conditions are in place.

Further Reading:
Marine Stewardship Council