The Target 75 initiative launched by Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP) is halfway toward the goal of 75 percent of seafood production in key sectors classified as sustainable or improving toward sustainability by the end of 2020. This progress has been driven by increasing collaboration among industry, NGOs, governments, and other stakeholders.
SFP CEO Jim Cannon, in a luncheon presentation last month coinciding with Seafood Expo North America, said that 14 percent of seafood in all T75 sectors is already meeting the sustainable criteria, while 18 percent can be classified as “improving.” Cannon also noted that many industry stakeholders have expressed strong interest in starting new fishery or aquaculture improvement projects (FIPs/AIPs) that will cover a total of 28 percent more.
That leaves a mere 15 percent to go, and with more than 18 months remaining until the 2020 deadline, Cannon said he and SFP are confident that the industry can meet these goals.
Exciting developments include the launch of a Global Mahi Supply Chain Roundtable (SR), with 11 participating companies already onboard. The SR will focus on Eastern Pacific Ocean large pelagic multi-species fisheries and on influencing regional policy and encouraging alignment across the entire fleet at a transboundary level.
Cannon also highlighted very positive news in the squid sector, which at one point had no volume whatsoever meeting the T75 criteria, but now has risen to 14 percent, with a number of projects in the works that promise to push that number even higher. On the aquaculture front, a collaboration of NGOs, IDH, and the Indonesian Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries is launching a pilot to implement new tools to improve regional productivity, investment, profitability, and environmental performance.
YouTube video: Jim Cannon describing T75 success, and what to do next
Cannon noted that there has been significant improvement progress this past year, with 45 FIPs achieving A or B ratings, which means they made measurable improvements in the past 12 months. Examples of progress include new logbook systems, new harvest control rules, and new research programs.
“A lot of those improvements are not very ‘sexy’ at all,” he said. “But these are the building blocks upon which you ultimately do get stock recovery and better management of fishery and aquaculture practices globally, which will ultimately lead to healthier seas.”