If the fishery achieves certification, this could influence the pearl industry globally and feed the demand for a growing market of people who don’t just want to eat sustainable options but want to wear them too.
Speaking from the fishery in Broome, Western Australia, Executive Officer of PPA, Aaron Irving is ecstatic at this game-changing move.
“People care about sustainability and healthy bountiful oceans and hopefully, if we achieve certification, they’ll be able to wear that sustainability with the world’s first MSC certified pearls,” said Mr Irving.
From the pristine waters of Western Australia and Northern Territory, the pearl fishery which produces pearls, pearl meat and mother of pearl products will be examined over a 12 to 18 month period by a team of independent scientists to determine whether it meets MSC standard.
MSC Asia Pacific Director, Patrick Caleo, is looking forward to welcoming this unique fishery into the program.
“We always think of seafood when we think of fishing but here we have a fishery that will change how we view fishing, sustainability and the different ways we can look after our ocean,” said Mr Caleo.
“There’s a growing number of people who want do good by their oceans but also want to look good. If certified, the pearl fishery will allow that discerning customer to not only eat sustainable seafood but also wear jewellery that has positive impacts on our oceans.”
The fishery turns around A$60 - $80 million per year making it the second most valuable fishery in Western Australia.
Independent certification body SCS Global Services will carry out this assessment of the Pearl oyster fishery.
Stakeholders are encouraged to provide input throughout the process.
To comment on the assessment of this fishery, please contact Dr. Sabine Daume at SCS Global Services: SDaume@scsglobalservices.com.