WWF urges Marine Stewardship Council to adopt key reforms

Posted on January, 25 2018

WWF responds to MSC's statement about its reform agenda dated 24 January 2018.
Gland, Switzerland - WWF has been continually engaged in dialogue with the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) to seek improvements in key areas of the MSC’s seafood certification systems. On Wednesday 24 January, the MSC issued a public statement about its reform agenda in response to these discussions, and advocacy from other conservation interests.

In an initial response to the MSC’s statement, John Tanzer, Oceans Leader, WWF International, said: “We are pleased that the MSC Board has clearly recognized the need for continuing improvement, and has made some initial commitments towards that end. Whilst encouraged by the MSC’s willingness to address conservation concerns, WWF does expect to see strong, more specific and more immediate commitments.

“The MSC must move swiftly to fully address long-standing concerns about the programme’s ability to deliver on its vision for sustainability. WWF believes that addressing these concerns is essential for the MSC to maintain its leadership role in wild-caught fishery certification and to help tackle some of the urgent issues facing our oceans.

“While WWF welcomes the MSC’s commitment to action various improvements, there are key areas where we believe the MSC must make rapid and clear progress. These include ensuring that the third-party assessment process of fisheries, in order to grant certifications, is independent, objective and scientifically robust. The standard should also incorporate the best available science to check sustainability assessments for those fisheries that are already certified. WWF believes the standard should safeguard endangered, threatened and protected species, and important habitats, and that it should be in accord with the objectives of marine protected areas.

“WWF will assess in more detail the MSC’s proposed reforms and will make further comment. We look forward to continuing to work with the MSC to both strengthen the standard and the assurance process, in accordance with the vital role the MSC and certification can play in driving improvements in fisheries management at a time when our oceans are reeling under unprecedented challenges.”

--- ends ---

For more information, please contact:
Rucha Naware | WWF International | rnaware@wwfint.org; +32465751339
MSC certified fish
© Edward Parker WWF