Transitioning Fisheries

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Fishery Improvement Projects

A fishery improvement project (FIP) draws together fishers, industry, researchers, government and NGOs to help improve fishing practices and management. Through a transparent and comprehensive approach, FIPs aim to increase a fishery’s performance and help it meet the requirements of the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) standard.

Across the seafood supply chain, WWF is working with retailers, food service companies, manufacturers, and suppliers to responsibly source seafood from fisheries that are MSC certified. By encouraging non-certified fisheries to improve their practices and ultimately meet the MSC standard, seafood buyers can help increase the performance of their source fisheries and decrease negative impacts on the water.

By supporting FIPs, WWF and its partners are helping to conserve marine ecosystems and protect the livelihoods of the millions of people who depend on them.



While WWF has primarily engaged in sustainability efforts with major global tuna brands, retailers, and consumers, The Global FIP Alliance for Sustainable Tuna (G-FAST) model aims to improve sustainability practices through directly engaging with tuna fishing vessel owners in formal comprehensive FIPs.

This model is successfully demonstrating that motivated fishers — uniquely positioned at the beginning of the supply chain — are effective agents for developing best practices and implementing successful improvements in gear and procedures. 


To advance fisheries management reform at scale, WWF is implementing a larger-scale, holistic approach to fisheries management by engaging multiple fisheries within a priority region simultaneously to improve their environmental and social performance.


FisheryProgress makes verified fishery improvement project (FIP) progress information accessible and reliable for hundreds of industry and NGO users. To learn more about FIP progress, visit


We use a stepwise process to identify sustainability issues in a fishery, implement improvements, and report on results that occur in the five stages of a FIP

Four participants in a WWF workshop looking at a laptop screen in Naypyidaw, Myanmar

Stage 1
Scoping & Development
The fishery’s performance is evaluated against the MSC standard and stakeholders are recruited to participate in the project.

A Fisheries Observer makes notes on fish bycatch and fishing activities aboard the Pomada shrimp fishing boat, Posorja, Ecuador

Stage 2
Workplan & Launch
Project participants and workplan are finalized and posted publicly. An associated budget must be adopted by the participants.

A Fisheries Observer analyzes fish bycatch on the Pomada Shrimp Fishing boat, Posorja, Ecuador

Stage 3
Stakeholders work together to address the fishery’s shortcomings, track progress publicly, and course correct if needed.

A tuna fishing boat docked in Posorja, Ecuador

Stage 4
Improvements in Fishing Practices or Management
The fishery has modified fishing practices, or improved fisheries policy or management.

Lobsterman Bruno Underwood swims underwater holding two lobsters, Spanish Wells, Bahamas

Stage 5
On the Water Change
The fishery has achieved verifiable improvements on the water, such as reduced fishing mortality, habitat impacts, and bycatch.

Get Involved

Become a FIP Participant

By signing on to support a FIP you are joining forces with other leaders in the industry that seek to help conserve marine ecosystems, protect livelihoods, and increase the number of sustainable fisheries and the overall supply of sustainable seafood.

A fisherman pulls a trap from a lobster fishing boat off the coast of Honduras

© Antonio Busiello / WWF-US

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