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Kamchatka fishermen are welcome to join the sustainable fishery certification process
30 april 2019
A workshop devoted to the fisheries' environmental assessment took place in Kamchatka. The event was organized by Marine Certification LLC, Gidrobionica LLC, with support from Kamchatka ministry of fisheries and WWF-Russia's Kamchatka Office.
The sustainability certificate of Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) is a key to the largest international seafood markets for fishing companies. The certificate allows fishermen to sell their products for higher prices. On the other hand, it is a marker of environmentally sound operations. Some experts are certain that as the number of certified fisheries goes up, and the margin for ecolabel is eventually to go down in time, the ecolabel itself will become an integral condition for selling seafood products at lucrative markets.
"We can use the Forestry Stewardship Council (FSC) certification as an example of what will probably happen to the seafood certification. FSC is widely known as the major environmental certification of sustainability for companies which are engaged in forest management. The number of certified companies is very high nowadays. Thus, ecolabel does not provide the surplus value as high as it used to in the early years. However, a forestry company, which lacks ecolabel, is forbidden to sell goods at environmentally sensitive markets, for instance in the EU. The MSC certification process will work the same way in several years. But just now it is the perfect moment to join the certification process to receive the highest income," said Pavel Trushevsky, the director of Marine Certification LLC.
"The process of MSC certification takes time, money and efforts. The assessment conducted by an independent foreign credentialed company can be rather expensive for Russian fisheries. In 2016, a Russian company was accredited by MSC. Thus, the services of a domestic company should cost local fishermen less than those of a foreign appraiser," said Sergey Korostelev, the Sustainable Marine Fishing Programm Coordinator with WWF-Russia.
By the end of April 2019, there were fifteen companies fishing for salmon in Kamchatka that had been granted the MSC certificates. "Vityaz-Avto", "Tymlatsky Fish Factory", "Ustkamchatryba" and other large fishing companies were among the certified. Seven more companies were at the full assessment stage. The facilitators of the workshop look forward for other yet non-certified fisheries of Kamchatka to join the certification process.