Each of the three New Zealand hake trawl fisheries, five ling trawl fisheries and five ling long line fisheries have been certified as sustainable against the MSC standard – the ‘gold standard’ for sustainable seafood production.
Only eight per cent of the world’s wild-capture harvest is certified through the global MSC program which sets high internationally-accepted standards for sustainable fishing and provides consumers with assurance that MSC certified seafood is sustainable, based on sound, independent science.
70% of New Zealand's EEZ fisheries now MSC certified
Chief Executive of the Deepwater Group (DWG), a non-profit organisation representing quota owners in New Zealand’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) fisheries, George Clement, says MSC certification verifies the world-class management of New Zealand’s fisheries.
“This achievement is a testament to the New Zealand seafood sector’s ongoing commitment to sustainable utilisation and their ongoing partnership with the Ministry for Primary Industries to ensure these fisheries are managed for the future,” said Mr Clement.
“The MSC certification process is not an easy one – it is both rigorous and open to full public scrutiny,” said Mr Clement.
“DWG is leading the field with their continued commitment to certify their fisheries to our global standard for sustainable fishing. Seafood lovers can be confident these MSC certified sustainable fisheries have proven that their stock is healthy, their impact on the marine environment is minimal, and that they’re well managed,” said New Zealand country manager for MSC, Patrick Caleo.
DWG has embarked on an ambitious program to obtain MSC certification for not less than 85 per cent of the seafood production from New Zealand’s EEZ (amounting to some 29 fisheries being certified).
With the ling and hake fisheries certified they now have over 70 per cent of New Zealand’s catch from the EEZ MSC certified (17 fisheries certified) with a further 14 per cent either under assessment or in Fisheries Improvement Projects towards MSC assessment.