Author Archives: gordonlangley

Malta harbour at night

SSC off to a good start in 2016

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The SSC has had a busy start to 2016, gaining visibility at this year’s Seaweb Seafood Summit in Malta, and seeing several members recognised for their leadership and commitment to seafood sustainability. The event’s global attendance list created an ideal setting to share learning from the UK seafood supply chain.

In a panel discussion on 3 February, three members presented their experience of collaborating as part of the SSC to develop solutions that work for their businesses. Young’s Seafood (David Parker) spoke of their engagement with a fishery improvement project for scampi, while Icelandic Seachill (Kevin Powell) reflected on how collaboration amongst SSC members helps deliver and reinforce their commitment to sustainability. Finally, Harbour Lights (Peter Fraser) highlighted the challenges and opportunities the SSC offers for an independent fish and chip restaurant. The discussion was a productive one – with interest in how members made the SSC model work, and how collaboration on improvement projects can help build consumer trust.

We were also invited to join in a panel discussion on consumer attitudes to sustainability, on the same day. This was another useful opportunity to sharing the UK’s experience on the challenges of agreeing what fish sustainability means, and how to best communicate it to consumers.

As we had announced in September, the SSC was a finalist in the 2016 Seafood Champion Awards Vision category – not a negligible feat with 90 applicants. While we were unsuccessful this time, we extend our congratulations to the Parties to the Nauru Agreement Organisation for their inspiring initiative to preserve Pacific tuna stocks. SSC members did gain some special recognition – as Sainsbury’s Aquaculture and Fisheries Manager, Ally Dingwall, won the Leadership category award. In other good news, representatives of Marks & Spencers (Hannah Macintyre) and Young’s Seafood (David Parker), both SSC members, were nominated as future seafood leaders in Intrafish’s 40 under 40 campaign. Congratulations!

Photo: Giuseppe Milo
lighthouse

SSC Launch codes

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On Thursday 18 September, members of the Sustainable Seafood Coalition will launch their two codes of conduct.

The Labelling Code

The SSC has created the Voluntary Code of Conduct on Environmental Claims (‘Labelling Code’). All SSC members signing up to the code will label their fish and seafood in a harmonised way, adhering to minimum criteria and only using claims of responsibility and sustainability. They will no longer use other  environmental claims. For consumers that means much more clarity and consistency when buying fish products or dishes from SSC members.

The members signing up to the labelling code are: Co-operative Food, Marks & Spencer, Morrisons, Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Waitrose, Lyons Seafoods, New England Seafood Limited, Birds Eye UK, The Saucy Fish Co. / Icelandic Group UK Ltd, Young’s Seafood Limited, Direct Seafoods and M&J Seafood.

The Sourcing Code

The SSC has developed minimum criteria in the Voluntary Code of Conduct on Environmentally Responsible Fish and Seafood Sourcing (the ‘Sourcing Code’). This covers two main areas: general good practice and a commitment to do a risk assessment. Once the Sourcing Code is implemented, all members signing up to the code will have responsible sourcing policies and will adhere to agreed minimum standards.

Our members want to source their fish and seafood responsibly to deliver a long term sustainable industry to their customers based on quality and value. Due to the cross-sectoral nature of the SSC, the Code will create consistency across the industry, allowing consumers to make more informed decisions about their fish and seafood purchases.

Members signing up to the Sourcing Code are: Co-operative Food, Marks & Spencer, Morrisons, Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Waitrose, Feng Sushi, Harbour Lights Falmouth, River Cottage, Lyons Seafoods, New England Seafood Limited, Birds Eye UK, The Saucy Fish Co. / Icelandic Group UK Ltd, Young’s Seafood Limited, Direct Seafoods, Le Lien Ltd, M&J Seafood.

Read the Sourcing Code or download both SSC codes.

ClientEarth is the secretariat of the SSC. To stay up to date with the progress of the coalition, you can sign up for ClientEarth’s newsletter at clientearth.org.

Image: James Whitesmith
This blog was updated on 14/12/2016.
red mullet

Fish Friday: red mullet

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We are grateful to Great British Chefs for offering their hints and tips on cooking red mullet – a fish which deserves more attention in the UK and which is much loved on the continent. You can read it as part of ClientEarth’s Fish of the Fortnight series on the Hot Air blog.

“Rarely will you hear someone say they’re popping down the local chippie for a red mullet and chips, or that they got up extra early to buy some red mullet at the local fishmongers.”

Bon appetit!