It’s been one year since Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP) debuted its Target 75 initiative, and we’re pleased to report a large number of new improvement efforts in many key sectors, including squid, snapper/grouper, fresh and frozen tuna, and octopus.

SFP launched the initiative in June 2017 at the SeaWeb Seafood Summit in Seattle, WA, and since then has produced a number of follow-up reports describing individual sectors, including squid, fresh and frozen tuna, octopus, reduction fisheries, and coldwater crab. SFP is also planning to release a new report covering snapper and grouper shortly. 

While updated numbers for these sectors since Target 75’s 2017 launch are still a work in progress, a number of programs have demonstrated new progress toward the Target 75 goal, and many more are now in the works. SFP believes part of the reason for the new work is growing global interest in sustainable seafood production spurred by the initiative. 

In the squid sector, at least four fisheries are showing significant new progress toward sustainability: three by joining a FIP or making recent progress in ongoing FIPs, and one by entering certification by the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC). In addition, work continues on establishing the East China Sea and Yellow Sea Japanese flying squid (Todarodes pacificus) – trawl FIP. Efforts to launch this FIP, led by Ocean Outcomes and Sea Farms, together with industrial stakeholders such as American seafood supplier PanaPesca and local institutions (including the China Aquatic Products Processing and Marketing Alliance – CAPPMA), began before the Target 75 launch. However, the initiative has provided new encouragement for this and related efforts, according to Sam Grimley, SFP’s Director of Strategic Initiatives, Buyer Engagement.

“Squid Supply Chain Roundtable (SR) participants have been engaged in a number of improvement efforts in recent years, leading to substantial contributions to the sustainability of global squid production. The analysis conducted under Target 75 enables SR members to monitor the global impact these efforts are having over time, while also providing a roadmap for future improvements to the global squid sector,” Grimley said. 

The specific FIP volume is unknown, but Japanese flying squid catches in from Chinese vessels in the East China Sea and Yellow Sea (FAO 61) are quite significant. Reported Chinese catches for this species in 2014 were 332,500 tonnes, representing about 9 percent of the sector.  

For snapper and grouper, SFP is releasing a new sector report this month, detailing the status of global production; there are also three potential new FIPs in the works covering snapper and/or grouper, all focusing on fisheries in southeast Asia. In some countries, such as Indonesia, the Target 75 initiative has encouraged the development of national FIPs, according to Megan Westmeyer, Fishery Improvement Analyst at SFP. 

“The T75 analysis for the snapper and grouper sector emphasized to the supply chain the need to move away from smaller, regional FIPs to a national approach in which the supply chain helps to encourage policy reform at a national level. Such a national FIP approach is necessary in many of the countries producing large quantities of snapper and grouper, and a national FIP pilot is currently being explored in Indonesia," Westmeyer said.

For fresh and frozen tuna, SFP has noted some relevant updates: two new FIPs, one in Vanuatu and another in Japan, have shown significant progress, while another tuna fishery, a longline fishery off American Samoa, has become MSC certified, all since the Target 75 launch. 

“T75 has clearly laid out the environmental sustainability challenges in the fresh and frozen tuna sector in meeting sourcing requirements of supply chain members. The scale of needed improvements has focused our SR members’ thinking about large-scale tuna FIPs and has identified the Japanese market as a crucial element in making T75 a reality,” said Tom Pickerell, Global Tuna Director for SFP. 

For octopus, at least five new FIPs are in the works. At Seafood Expo North America earlier this year, SFP held the first meeting of the new Global Octopus Supply Chain Roundtable, inviting stakeholders to take part in new efforts to achieve T75 goals for octopus. 

“The T75 octopus sector report has provided industry with a roadmap to start the sustainability improvement process in octopus fisheries. This has made industry believe that positive change can be achieved relatively soon, something that has encouraged the willingness for pre-competitive work,” said Pedro Ferreiro, SFP’s Deputy Director, Buyer Engagement.

Contact: Sean Murphy, Communications Director