Norwegian saithe fisheries earn MSC recertification

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Source: Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)

The Norwegian North East Arctic and North Sea saithe fisheries have been successfully recertified against the MSC standard for sustainable fisheries. Saithe sourced from the fisheries therefore remains eligible to bear the MSC ecolabel. The MSC certificate for the Norwegian saithe fisheries was issued by Det Norske Veritas Certification AS and is valid for five years subject to surveillance audits.

About the Norwegian saithe fisheries

The Norwegian saithe fisheries were the first fisheries from Norway to obtain MSC certification in June 2008. Fishing takes place year round using demersal trawl, gill nets, hook and line, purse seines and Danish seines. Main products are fresh and frozen loins and fillets for the EU market.

Sustainable operations

Jan-Ivar Maråk, Fiskebåt Deputy Director says: “MSC is important in order to get access to our most important markets for saithe, and serves as documentation of sustainability to the retailers. In addition the MSC certification commits both the fishery authorities and the industry itself to focus on sustainable operations and continuous improvement in the execution of the fishery.'

Continued sustainability

Camiel Derichs, MSC Regional Director Europe says: “It is wonderful news that the Norwegian saithe fisheries obtained their second MSC certification. The fisheries demonstrated through independent expert assessment that the stocks are in good shape and well managed. Broader environmental impacts of these predominantly pelagic fisheries are well documented and managed. This confirms the continued sustainability of the Norwegian saithe fisheries. Since the Norwegian saithe fisheries have engaged in the MSC program in 2006, several developments have taken place. Additional research on bottom impacts of these fisheries was conducted, and understanding about bycatch and interaction with Endangered Threatened Protected (ETP) species has further improved. The stock status of North Sea cod as bycatch in the North Sea saithe fishery is improving. As part of the current certification it is anticipated that such improvements will continue to be made where appropriate. These developments and the recertification are testament to the commitment from the Norwegian industry to assure sustainability in their fisheries, and to verify and communicate this aspect of these fisheries through the most robust and credible option available.”

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