As is to be expected, Russian pollock processors have welcomed the WWF’s decision to withdraw its objection to the Russian Sea of Okhotsk pollock Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certification.
“WWF’s objection centred on some conditions and milestones in [the assessment’s ‘action plan’] which in their view required adjustment, said the Russian Pollock Sustainability Alliance.
“These points have now been resolved following a number of discussions between the PCA and WWF within the framework,” it said.
The Russian Pollock Sustainability Alliance Company represents leading brands and processors Delmar, Frosta, Gorton’s, High Liner Foods, Iglo Foods Group, Pickenpack, Royal Greenland and Young’s Seafood.
“During last two months we have had an intensive and constructive dialogue with the WWF Smart Fishing Initiative network on some adjustments to the Client Action Plan for the Sea of Okhotsk fishery,” said the Russian pollock catchers’ association (PCA), which is the client for the fishery’s certification.
“After consultations with the CAB Intertek Moody Marine and the Russian fishery management agencies, the PCA has agreed to key some changes proposed by WWF to modify the Client Action Plan for the Sea of Okhotsk fishery which we believe will further improve confidence in its management”.
“It is entirely normal in the MSC process for applicants such as the PCA to commit on action plans with key milestones within the defined period set within the MSC process,” said the alliance.
“We have thus confirmed our support to the PCA and the WWF Smart Fishing Initiative in the areas of monitoring activity, at-sea observer program and on projects to generate better understanding of certain ecosystem aspects within the fishery.”
“This move is another example of the benefits of sustainable fisheries development collaboration that we have developed for this fishery though the Russian Pollock Sustainability Alliance and we commend both the PCA and WWF for showing leadership on this issue.”
The Russian Pollock Sustainability Alliance companies “have committed to continue support the PCA in their MSC journey and implementation of the client action plan for the Sea of Okhotsk fishery,” said the alliance.