Skip to main content
FAO, NGOs Push for Guidelines on Transshipment
A campaign to develop, publicize, and enforce guidelines setting standards for the responsible management of transferring catch between vessels at sea is gaining momentum.
The Food and Agriculture Organization is leading an effort to close loopholes allowing for transshipment of catch on the high seas, a practice the United Nations organization said encourages illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing.
Trygg Mat Tracking, Global Fishing Watch, the International Monitoring, Control, and Surveillance Network, and The Pew Charitable Trusts said in a report there is evidence some of the areas where transshipment of fresh fish takes place, especially at sea, “are inaccessible to fisheries inspectors that create gaps for unscrupulous operators to manipulate or otherwise omit data pertaining to their fishing practices and catches for financial gain.” Continue reading here (Source: SeafoodSource).
Illegal Fishing in Pacific Much Lower Than 2016 Level, Says Report
Effective Pacific fisheries monitoring and surveillance coupled with improved data reporting are among reasons cited by a recently released fisheries study that says the problem of illegal fishing in the Pacific is far less than a 2016 report that estimated losses of over US$600 million a year.
The new study, by the Australia-based fisheries consulting firm MRAG Asia Pacific, released in late 2021, suggests the problem of illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing in the Pacific, while still serious, is not nearly as big as suggested by an earlier report.
The new report was called “groundbreaking” and “unique” to the Pacific region by Francisco Blaha, the offshore fisheries advisor to the Marshall Islands Marine Resources Authority. Continue reading here(Source: Radio New Zealand).
Tuna King Thai Union Dives Into Plant-Based Seafood
The world’s largest canned tuna seller, Thai Union Group, has started marketing its own brand of plant-based seafood in a bid to dominate the sector and promote aquatic sustainability.
The company spent 300 million baht ($9 million) to establish the Global Innovation Center, a Bangkok research facility with a staff of over 100 — including workers from the U.S., Europe and China — engaged in the research and development of new products and packaging material.
The Global Innovation Center has recently been concentrating strategically on alternative seafood that uses ingredients derived from plants. The center last year hired Maarten Geraets to head its newly created alternative protein department. Geraets’ resume includes more than two decades working in marketing and R&D at Nestle. Continue reading here (Source: Nikkei Asia).
Japan’s Bluefin Tuna Management Marred by Underreporting of Catches
Underreported catches are weighing on Japan’s management system for Pacific bluefin tuna stocks, with a government official saying that a major reporting failure uncovered late last year was only the “tip of the iceberg.”
To prevent the overfishing of bluefin tuna, the country’s Fisheries Agency sets a separate catch quota for tuna weighing less than 30 kilograms and those weighing over 30 kilograms under a relevant international agreement. Based on the quotas, the agency allocates catches to each prefecture and fishing method.
Fishery operators are asked to observe the catch quotas and obliged to report their actual catches. Continue reading here (Source: The Japan Times).
China Protests IOTC Yellowfin Tuna Allocation Limits for 2022
Despite the People’s Republic of China maintaining that mainland China and Taiwan are parts of “One China” whose sovereignty cannot be divided, the world’s second-largest economy appears reluctant to entertain such perceptions when it comes to the management of fisheries for both entities.
The country’s delegation to the Indian Ocean Tuna Commission (IOTC) has disagreed with the commission’s 10,557 metric ton (MT) yellowfin tuna catch-limit for 2022, saying the figure is below the 15,339 MT it expected. The higher quota is based on catch limits being calculated separately for mainland China and Taiwan.
“Based on the long-standing practice at IOTC, the yellowfin tuna catch limits for the People Republic of China in 2022 shall be 15,339 MT (4,641 MT for the mainland China and 10,688 MT for Taiwan), and not 10,557 [MT],” said a letter to the IOTC from Jiangfeng Zhu, China’s commissioner to the IOTC. Continue reading here (Source: SeafoodSource).
CBP Continues Crackdown on Forced Labor on the High Seas
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is continuing its crackdown on forced labor in certain Pacific high seas fisheries. On Friday, CBP banned the importation of seafood produced the the Vanuatu-flagged longliner Da Wang, which is owned and operated by the Taiwanese company Yong Feng Fishery Limited. The decision finalizes a blanket “withhold release order” that CBP imposed on the vessel’s products last year.
“CBP is entering the new year with a renewed commitment to investigating and enforcing the U.S. prohibition against importing goods made with forced labor,” said CBP Commissioner Chris Magnus. “We will again dedicate significant resources to rooting out the evil and inhumane practices of forced labor.” Continue reading here(Source: The Maritime Executive).
West African Nations Sign Pact to Reduce IUU Fishing
Benin, Ghana and Togo have signed a pact to work together to reduce illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing in the Gulf of Guinea.
Benin and Togo completed their first joint patrol operation in mid-December. It was funded by the European Union’s Improved Regional Fisheries Governance in Western Africa program, known as PESCAO. Ghana signed the agreement in late December.
Besides at-sea patrols, the countries will share information from the Regional Monitoring, Control and Surveillance Centre in Ghana, which was formed by the Fisheries Committee for the West Central Gulf of Guinea (FCWC) in 2021. Continue reading here (Source: defenceWeb).