29 Apr 2010

Eco-labelling assessment process underway for PNA fisheries

2:31 pm on 29 April 2010

The eight Pacific island nations that control most of the region's tuna stocks are having more than half a million tonnes of skipjack tuna assessed for eco-certification.

The Parties to the Nauru Agreement, which includes the Federated States of Micronesia, Kiribati, the Marshall Islands, Nauru, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands and Tuvalu, announced earlier this year that it was approaching the Marine Stewardship Council to begin the certification process.

The PNA's director, Dr Transform Aqorau, says if the purse seine fisheries meet the council's standard, about half of the skipjack tuna caught from the Western and Central Pacific will be eligible for the MSC ecolabel next year.

"Consumers are increasingly demanding that the fish they purchase is caught from a sustainably managed fishery and so whether or we do it now or in the future there is some pressure for us to look at eco-labeling."

The director of the Parties to the Nauru Agreement, Dr Transform Aqorau.