Western and Central Pacific Ocean Tuna Purse Seine
MSC Certified: December 8, 2021
Last Updated: July 2022
After working for several years with WWF, OPAGAC—an amalgamation of nine Spanish purse seine tuna companies—entered the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) full assessment process in September 2020, and received MSC certification on December 8, 2021.
In the tropical waters of the Western and Central Pacific Ocean, OPAGAC represents 9 purse seine vessels (some of the vessels fishing here are also authorized to fish at the IATTC area), catching approximately 3% the region’s total tropical tuna catch. Most of the fleet’s tuna is processed in regional facilities with most of the canned product exported to markets in Europe.
The Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC) has made no progress towards a formal HCR for any of the tropical stocks. There is also a need to complete testing of the existing Control Rule using MSE and adopt formal CR. Problems with statistics available for some important fleets (e.g. Indonesia, Philippines) persist in the region.
The active involvement of FIP Stakeholders, including International Seafood Sustainability Foundation (ISSF), Areas Beyond National Jurisdiction (ABNJ), Pew Charitable Trusts, AZTI, the Spanish Institute of Oceanography (IEO) and the Spanish Secretary-General for Fisheries (SGP), drove improvements against the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) standard.
FIPs provide a step-by-step approach to bring fishery management practices up to the MSC standard. With support from FIP participants and FIP stakeholders, the FIP achieved several important goals that enabled it to earn certification, including:
We encourage action across the supply chain to support FIP progress. A FIP Participant is an industry member that is part of the seafood supply chain for the FIP product and is actively engaged in supporting the FIP.
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