The Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) is reducing the costs of the fee it charges suppliers for using its eco-label.
Under a new payment structure, starting April 1, the royalty fee will be tiered to decrease as the percentage of sales with the MSC label increase.
Currently, the fee is flat at 0.5%.
Meanwhile, independent outlets such as fishmongers and restaurants trading less than £125,000 ($200,000) wholesale value of MSC labelled products annually will no longer pay the volume licensing fee, but will instead pay a fixed fee of £156 ($250) annually, the MSC said.
The hope is that this will make the MSC programme more accessible to small businesses “by making costs more predictable upfront, reducing uncertainty and minimizing any administrative burden of tracking and reporting sales”, said the organization.
The different strands within the revised pricing model are designed to meet the needs of both large and small companies and to promote and incentivize the use of MSC’s consumer-facing ecolabel, according to the MSC.
Companies generating over 75% of total royalty income will benefit from this new charging regime, it claimed.
“The MSC has been listening to its stakeholders. We are introducing this revised charging structure after extensive consultation with our partners and supporters,” said Rupert Howes, MSC CEO, in a statement.
“The new structure will reduce the overall costs of participation in the MSC programme and add value to those companies who share our vision of healthy and productive oceans.”
“We also hope it will encourage greater use of the ecolabel in the global marketplace that is increasingly demanding credible, third-party and fully traceable assurance of the sustainability of its seafood choices.”