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NE Arctic Prawn Fishery Gains MSC Certification

NORWAY - The Norwegian North East Arctic cold water prawn fishery has becomee the latest northern European fishery to gain certification to the MSC standard for sustainable fishing. It joins the North East Arctic cod and haddock fisheries, which gained certification last November.

The Norwegian Seafood Council has been the client for all three certifications, and now announces independent verification of another of Norway’s sustainable and well-managed fisheries.

The fishery takes place all year around along the Norwegian coastline, up near Svalbard and in the Barents Sea where both small inshore vessels and larger ocean-going vessels catch around 20,000 tonnes annually. The stock is shared with other nations but the Norwegian fleet, which comprises 89 vessels, catches around 30 per cent of the total catch. Europe is the main market for Norwegian cold water prawns where both fresh and frozen prawns are sold in Sweden, the UK, Denmark, Finland, Italy and France.

Ove Johansen, NSC Marketing Manager for prawn says: “Norway has for years been acknowledged as one of the world’s leading nations in sustainable fisheries management. We are now pleased that MSC certification was obtained for Norwegian prawn fisheries as sustainably harvested. The MSC certification is an important tool in our marketing of Norwegian prawns and will help to strengthen our communication with our main markets.”

Camiel Derichs, MSC Deputy Director Europe says: “The Norwegian seafood industry is continuing to demonstrate its commitment to sustainable fisheries through this certification to MSC standards of the Barents Sea prawn fisheries. The certifier found during the assessment of the fishery that cold water prawn stock is in excellent shape, that exploitation levels are moderate to low and that the impacts of this fishery on other species and the ecosystem in the Barents Sea are limited. The fishery received three conditions of certification, which are expected to improve long-term management, including the Harvest Control Rule. I congratulate these fisheries on an excellent result and the MSC looks forward to working with our partners in Norway and more widely to help promote MSC certified Norwegian prawns.”

Lucy Towers

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