The decidion of the pole-and-line skipjack and yellowfin tuna fishery in Sorong to obtain the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) standard will provide an invaluable foundation for traditional fishing communities in the Western Central Pacific Ocean.
This was pointed out by International Pole & Line Foundation (IPNLF), who praised the efforts made by local fishermen and by Indonesia’s Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries (MMAF) for the process to progress.
If successful, the fishery could be supplying MSC certified skipjack and yellowfin tuna to international markets by the end of 2018.
The move is possible thanks to fish packing, processing and exporting company PT Citraraja Ampat, which is one of IPNLF’s long-standing supply chain members having agreements in place with a fleet of around 40 pole-and-line vessels landing their catches directly to its quayside processing facility in Sorong, thereby ensuring a secure and traceable supply chain for its tuna.
Currently, the company’s pole-and-line tuna products are exported to Europe, Singapore and Malaysia.
A Certification Assessment Body (CAB) has been appointed and a date for the site visit by the Assessment Team has been set for August this year.
Sorong’s year-round pole-and-line fishing industry was commercially introduced in the 1970s, with the majority of fishermen coming from the local area. In 2016, the fishery caught and processed 2,600 tonnes of skipjack and 543 tonnes of yellowfin.
Located in area FAO 71 of the West Pacific Ocean, within the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of Indonesia, these operations contribute significantly to local livelihoods and food security.
“PT CRA is committed to sustainability and very proud to demonstrate this by measuring the Sorong pole-and-line fishery against the MSC standard. This is an exciting moment for PT CRA, our market partners, IPNLF and Indonesia’s pole-and-line tuna fishers,” pointed out Ali Wibisono, Director at PT Citraraja Ampat Canning.
For his part, Martin Purves, Managing Director of IPNLF, commented that Indonesia is the world’s biggest tuna fishing nation and the resource is crucial to the long-term viability of many of the country’s fishing communities.
“We look forward to working with them, as well as other IPNLF Members, to continue driving meaningful improvements in one-by-one tuna fisheries to secure the long-term sustainability of the resources and the communities that depend on them,” Purves concluded.