Twenty Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified and in assessment fisheries have joined together to form the Association of Sustainable Fisheries (ASF). The group’s goal is to foster constructive dialogue between MSC and its client fisheries.
“MSC is an important organization and a significant sustainability proof point for the industry," says Jim Gilmore, director of the At-sea Processors Association. " But there is room for improvement in the program’s administration. When it comes to developing policy and discussions of program cost, we want to ensure that our voices are heard.”
More than 50 stakeholders were present at the meeting to discuss the group’s founding and the need for greater client input in MSC’s efforts.
“We look forward to working with MSC leadership and to helping better open the lines of communications, as we all work towards a common sustainable fisheries goal,” offers Gilmore.
ASF will serve as a place where member fisheries can consolidate comments, questions and understandings and then share those issues with MSC.
“Our objective is to help MSC better do its job," Gilmore notes. "In Alaska there have been some disappointing interactions with MSC and we want to use our experience to help avoid replicating those frustrations elsewhere. We see ASF as having a real opportunity to be a positive, practical asset to MSC.”