There will be more MSC-certified catches in Russia this year
MRAG-Americas is involved in certification of fisheries according to Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) standards. The company published the draft report for four salmon fisheries assessment and called for public comments. Any suggestions on this report a welcome until 20 April, 2018.
The fishing companies are “Bolsheretsk”, “Narody Severa”, “Loyd”, and “Oktyabrsky fish factory”. They all fish on five large rivers of the western coast of Kamchatka – Opala, Bolshaya, Kikhchik, Mukhina, and Khomutina rivers.
“These four fisheries are the core of the “Bolshaya River” Association. The union appeared two years ago as a counter-measure to excessive poaching on the Bolshaya River which is one of the richest rivers in fish in the region. Following WWF-Russia’s experience, the Association supported 50 public inspectors on the river which led to essential decline in poaching activity,” said Sergey Rafanov, the director of WWF-Russia’s Kamchatka Ecoregional Office.
The assessment of the fisheries took about a year. WWF-Russia hitherto participated as a stakeholder in the process providing consultancy, helping in gathering necessary scientific data. Now, as the report is being finalized, the companies may well count on getting the certificate before this year fishing season begins.
“This year, scientists forecast extremely high runs of pink salmon in Western Kamchatka. Particularly, allowable catch is 140 000 metric tons of pink salmon. It’s quite possible that about a half of that enormous catch will be certified,” pointed our Sergey Korostelev who is the Sustainable Fishing Program coordinator of WWF-Russia’s Kamchatka Ecoregional Office.
Another fishery which is at the initial stage of the certification process is “Tymlatsky fishing factory”. It operates in Karaginsky Bay, in the eastern part of the peninsula. The company has merely signed a contract with the MSC. The first meeting with MRAG-America’s representatives and stakeholders will take place in April 2018. The results of assessment are expected to be made public in May 2019.