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First Italian Fishery Enters MSC Assessment

Sustainability Economics +3 more

ITALY - An Italian anchovy and sardine fishery has become the first in the Mediterranean to put itself forward for assessment to the Marine Stewardship Councils global standard for sustainable fishing.

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The Consorzio Mare Adriatico (Chioggia) fishery catches anchovy and sardine in the Northern Adriatic using a pelagic medium-water pair trawl.

It is the first fishery in Italy, and the first in the Mediterranean, to volunteer for assessment to the MSC Fisheries Standard. This standard is widely recognised as the world’s most credible and robust assessment for the sustainability of wild fisheries.

Anchovy and sardine are symbolic fish species in Italy. Most fish from the Consorzio Mare Adriatico are sold in Italy and Europe. If certified, these products will be eligible to carry the internationally recognised blue MSC ecolabel. This label provides consumers with an easy way to choose fish that can be traced back to a certified sustainable source. In this way, through their purchases, consumers can contribute to the health of the oceans.

Another small scale fishery enters the MSC program

The fisherman of Consorzio Mare Adriatico have a long history of fishing in the Adriatic. The fleet consists of eight vessels fishing in pairs. In 2014 the fishery caught about 2,000 tons for anchovies and 3,500 tons for sardine.

Francesca Oppia, MSC Program Director for Italy, said: "The MSC’s vision is for oceans to be teeming with life for future generations. We welcome this fishery’s decision to enter MSC assessment. This is an important milestone for the MSC and for fishing in the Mediterranean. The assessment will determine whether the fishery is taking the necessary steps to protect the ocean environment, and secure seafood supplies, for the future.”