A paper recently published in the journal Science drew attention to the rising interest in Fishery Improvement Projects (FIPs), initiatives through which a number of stakeholders collaborate to drive improvements in the sustainability of a fishery’s practices. Many FIPs are established in small-scale and developing world fisheries. These fisheries provide a vital source of income for over 90% of the world’s fishers, but often lack the funding and detailed evidence required to achieve full certification.
Tuna is pretty much the staple lunch food at our office. It’s simple, healthy – and with the blue MSC label I know it’s sustainable. Just throw it in a sandwich or toss it into a salad and you’re good to go. But it wasn’t until I started working here that I realised how much goes into getting my little tin of tuna from the ocean to my salad bowl.
Fun fact: seafood is one of most traded commodities in the world, ten times more than coffee, or rice. That’s a whole lot of fish flying around and makes me wonder where my little tin of tuna came from and, since I’m eating it about four times a week, what kind of impact it has on our oceans.
Late in 2015, two of MSC UK’s Fish and Kids team – Stefanie and Tilda – visited 13 primary schools and over 2,500 children. They wanted to illustrate the connection between ‘Fish and Chips Friday’ school lunches and the protection of our oceans. Stefanie tells us about their 6 week tour…
When they came into the hall and saw a banner depicting an ocean scene with different fish the kids sensed this was no ordinary assembly. It might seem odd to talk about fish first thing in the morning but there was a logic to our plan. We wanted the themes of fishing and ocean health to ‘follow’ the children through the day.
I cannot over emphasise the importance of our oceans. Not only do they provide a vital source of protein, a playground for recreation and our first line of defence against climate change, it is estimated that some one billion people rely on the oceans for their livelihood.
A new analysis of global fish catch published this week by scientists at the University of British Colombia serves as a timely reminder of the contribution that fishing makes to food security and the potential it has to damage marine ecosystems if not managed effectively.
The findings make a strong case for the need for sustainability and good management of our oceans resources. Something that the MSC program is tackling across the world.
My belly full from one too many meat-centric dinners I find myself thinking the Italians are onto something with their seafood-focused Christmas meals. I live in Canada, blessed by three oceans and millions of lakes, I work for the MSC… So why, oh why do I persist with my views that a holiday meal must include turkey or ham? Time to buck tradition!