The Asian Reduction Fisheries Supply Chain Roundtable (SR) seeks to address the improvements required in Asian fisheries that supply raw material for the production of fishmeal and oil for use in aquaculture feeds and other products. These include directed fisheries (e.g., Indian oil sardine) and the multispecies/multi-gear fisheries, including “trash fish,” found throughout Asia. These fisheries are highly complex, and are plagued by persistent environmental and often social problems. There have recently been efforts made in India, Thailand, and Vietnam to launch fishery improvement projects (FIPs) for some fisheries that supply fishmeal (directly and through byproducts). Initiatives are also being explored in fisheries with similar issues throughout the region (e.g., Bangladesh, Brunei, Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Vietnam).

In late 2018, IFFO RS launched a pilot project to trial a multispecies component to its standard. The pilot will allow qualifying marine ingredients companies to enroll in the IFFO RS Improvers Program, while allowing IFFO RS and stakeholders to test the methodology in active fisheries, with the goal of developing a set of criteria for these fisheries that could be added to the IFFO RS standard. In 2019, IFFO and the Global Aquaculture Alliance released a detailed report on the status of fisheries and related challenges in Thailand and Vietnam.

An industry-led, multi-stakeholder Seafood Task Force was formed in 2014 to address environmental and social issues in Thailand’s seafood supply chain, including those identified in fisheries supplying fishmeal and oil. The work of the Task Force is aligned with the efforts of SFP’s Asian Reduction Fisheries SR, as well as the Asian Farmed Shrimp Supply Chain Roundtable, and vice versa.

For more details on the sustainability status of the fisheries, progress of the FIPs, and improvement recommendations, please click here

The T75 sector report for reduction fisheries details the state of the sector. Currently, 7.4 million tonnes, or 41 percent of the global production in reduction fisheries, are considered sustainable or improving. The vast majority of this volume is under the Atlantic/Pacific reduction fishery sub-sector, which, if considered by itself, would have met the T75 goal already. There is a critical need to develop and expand improvement efforts in Southeast Asian fisheries, which are not included in the report’s analysis. These fisheries likely represent close to half of the global catch for this sector, yet are poorly understood and plagued by persistent environmental and social issues. Less than 1 percent of Asian fisheries are considered improving, due to a single FIP for Indian Oil Sardine.

The Asian Reduction Fisheries SR addresses the improvements required in the typically tropical, multispecies/multi-gear fisheries in Asia. The specific fisheries of recent interest involve those supplying fishmeal in India, Indonesia, Thailand, and Vietnam. There are fisheries with similar issues in the region (e.g., Bangladesh, Brunei, Cambodia, China, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam) where similar initiatives are also being explored. 

Fisheries and/or FIPs covered:

The Supply Chain Roundtable tracks a number of mixed species fisheries used for reduction and human consumption in the region, but the current focus of field work is India, Indonesia, Thailand, and Vietnam. 

SFP’s FishSource database contains fishery profiles within the ASEAN region. However, these profiles only represent a fraction of the species involved, and most fisheries are data-deficient.

The following FIPs and/or scoping projects are supported and monitored:

Vietnam

Thailand

  • Gulf of Thailand - multispecies trawl
  • Andaman Sea - multispecies trawl 

India

The SR welcomes additional participation of market-based buyers of fishmeal and oil for aquaculture feed production, especially those sourcing from fisheries in China, India, Indonesia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam. 

Current Supply Chain Roundtable Participants include:

Cargill
CP Foods
Grobest
The Fishin' Co 

SFP acknowledges the following companies, which participated in earlier efforts to support improvements in Asian fisheries:

ALDI South Group
Aquastar
Asda
The Co-operative Food UK
Davigel
Fleury Michon
Icelandic Group PLC
Lyons Seafood
Morrisons
Sainsbury's UK

Improvement needs, objectives, and action recommendations for 2020 are in development, and will be published after the annual SR meeting

Progress Update

A summary of past progress can be found in the SR Chronicles.

Improvement Needs and Recommendations: 

The Asian Reduction Fisheries Supply Chain Roundtable (SR) has sought to improve its current knowledge of the issues associated with the concerned fisheries.

Recommended actions for the entire supply chain include: 

  • Promote development and implementation of fishery management plans and strategies oriented toward complex multi-species fisheries (rather than single-species models).   
  • Launch fishery improvement projects on key fisheries supplying fishmeal and oil for aquaculture feeds.
  • Support development of certification schemes oriented to multi-species fisheries. When available, demand products that make use of fishmeal and oil from certified fisheries or fisheries engaged in credible improvement projects.
  • Ensure that appropriate data (landing statistics, fishing grounds, effort, catch species, and size composition) on marine fishes used for producing fishmeal and oil is publicly available and supports efforts for responsible fishery management.
  • Establish robust fishing vessel registers and licensing (including gear, species, and area). Ensure that suppliers of raw materials, as well as processors, act to address any labor/social issues that are identified and comply with all relevant labor laws.
  • Ensure full traceability of feed ingredients and feed lots throughout the supply chain.
  • For producers: Provide appropriate information about the species they source for producing fishmeal and fish feed (origin, catch, and size composition), as well as from where and how the fisheries operate (fishing grounds/vessel types/gears/landing ports).
  • For producers: Assist SFP in improving its understanding of the production and use of fishmeal and fish feed (processing process, labeling and packaging, traceability documentation, value, and commercial chain).

Project Contact

If you would like more information about the Supply Chain Roundtable or wish to support it, please contact SFP.

Asian Reduction Fisheries SR Update – October to December 2019

This briefing provides an update on progress, activities, and news in the areas of interest to the SR. It also indicates any actions and further support needed. A full summary of past progress, including details from past quarterly updates, can be found in the SR Chronicles.

1.     Improvements in Target 75 Priority Fisheries

Please find an overview of fisheries identified in the T75 Sector Report, including those currently not necessarily prioritized by the SR, here.

Indian oil sardine:

Update: Omega Fishmeal, CP Foods India, and a number of fisher associations published information about their improvement work on a project website. In October 2019, the project was accepted into the IFFO RS Improvers Program.

Further support needed: Support progress and workplan implementation. Encourage other regions and fishmeal producers in India to join or launch FIPs. 

Indonesia:

Further support needed: Encourage feed manufactures and their suppliers to get involved in the project. 

Thailand TSFR:

Update: No activity.

Further support needed: SR participants to identify and support fisheries in their supply chain to launch FIPs and/or enter the IFFO improver scheme. 

Vietnam:

Further support needed: SR participants to identify and support fisheries in their supply chain to launch FIPs and/or enter the IFFO improver scheme. 

2. Support to Established FIPs and Improvement Efforts

Update: The Indian Oil Sardine FIP (Omega Fishmeal, CP Foods India) has been accepted into the IFFO RS Improvers Program. SFP has provided advice on FIP reporting.

Further support needed: The FIP should be expanded to include other regions in western India. Refer your supply chain to this FIP to participate. 

3. Support for Mitigation of Overarching Fishery/FIP Sustainability Issues

IFFO and GAA released a full version of their report on the challenges in Southeast Asian fisheries. The main findings were released in Spring 2019. The full report contains additional data and analysis, as well as a foreword by SFP CEO Jim Cannon. The IFFO press release and links to the full report can be found here.

4. Expansion of the SR

Further support needed: SFP continues to seek opportunities to engage other regional and country-specific feed and fishmeal manufacturers, as well as other companies (e.g., surimi) sourcing fish from the same fisheries. Please work with your supply chains to help get feed companies involved.

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