At a meeting held on 27 May between the Thai Department of Fisheries, the Thai Feedmill Association, the Thai Fishmeal Association and IFFO (marine ingrediants association), it was agreed that a Thai industry/government round table would be formed to drive improvements in fishery management and identify fishmeal plants that would enter assessment for the IFFO Responsible Supply (RS) certificate.
The stakeholders present at the meeting recognised the need to demonstrate responsible fishmeal production following concerns raised by customers, NGO’s and media over unsustainable fishing in the
region and the sustainability of raw material entering fishmeal production.
Having presented the IFFO RS certification scheme to the meeting, it was agreed certification would demonstrate the use of responsibly-sourced raw materials and good factory management, including full traceability and exclusion of Illegal, Unregulated and Unreported (IUU) fish. A further roundtable meeting is being planned for July.
Nearly 60 per cent or 180,000 tonnes of the fishmeal produced in Thailand is derived from the recycled trimmings of seafood processing.
The first phase of certifications will focus on fishmeal produced from trimmings with a second phase covering whole fish raw material planned once guidance on tropical mixed trawl fisheries, currently in development, is available.
To enter assessment for the IFFO RS standard, companies must apply for IFFO membership.
Charoen Pokhpand Foods (CPF) Ltd, a major producer of feed in South East Asia and China and a key stakeholder in the Thai round table, has already decided to join IFFO with a view to entering one or more of its plants for certification.