Iascaigh Mhara Assist Irish Seafood Industry to Drive Sustainability
have launched a new certification standard to drive sustainability
in the Irish Fishing Sector. The BIM Responsibly Sourced Seafood
Standard is a third party accreditation that certifies fishing vessels
that adhere to strict criteria regarding Care of the Catch, Traceability
and Provenance, Training, Welfare and Social Sustainability.
2017 Issue Vol 29 No. 11
Keatinge, Interim CEO, BIM said: The Irish Seafood Sector
and in particular the catching sector understands the ever increasing
need to actively demonstrate their commitment to responsible fishing
practices. With 7 fishing vessels certified under the updated Responsibly
Sourced Seafood Standard and a target of 40 by year end; this standard
will provide an independently certified raw material source that
links in with the sectors sustainability charter, Origin Green.
This integrated approach to Irish seafood is vital for competitiveness,
especially on our existing and emerging export markets, where sustainability
is a key criterion for business.
Keatinge, BIM Interim CEO presenting certificates to Greencastle
fishermen Patrick McClenaghan, Cyril Harkin and Adrian McClenaghan
for the new BIM Responsibly Sourced Seafood Standard.
seafood exports valued at €557 million in 2016 and domestic
sales of seafood reaching €239 million, the demand for seafood
continues to grow. BIM is working directly with fishermen, fish
farmers, processors and retailers through an integrated sustainability
programme to ensure the Irish sector operates responsibly and in
doing so increases its profitability.
a traditional industry, the seafood sector has already made significant
progress with Irelands largest co-op, Castletownbere Fishermans
Co-op receiving the top accolade of Green Business of the
Year at this years Green Awards.
is also working with fishermen and producers through local Fishery
Improvement Programmes (FIPs). These programmes aim to improve
the long term sustainability of fisheries over time with volunteers
agreeing to engage in specific actions that work to preserve the
fishery. The activity of FIPs underpins the BIM Responsibly Sourced
Seafood Standard. The aim of the FIP is to meet the sustainability
standards set by the Marine Stewardship Council and they also enhance
producers and processers access to markets that now demand sustainability
credentials. Four fisheries have been identified for the first phase
of development; brown crab, whitefish (hake, monkfish and megrim),
nephrops and albacore tuna.
simple but very effective initiative is the BIM Fishing for Litter
programme. With five ports participating (Clogherhead, Killybegs,
Castletownbere, Union Hall and Ros a Mhil) and another 3 ports expected
to participate this year, the programme enables fishermen to collect
marine litter in heavy duty Fishing for Litter bags that can be
brought ashore for appropriate disposal and recycling. In 2016,
close to 8 tonnes of waste was collected and disposed of from the
marine environment. The Fishing for Litter programme links in with
BIMs existing Net Recycling programme and since 2005, has
recycled 600 tonnes of fishing nets.
Sustainability is another key element in BIMs Sustainability
programme and to demonstrate this at the recent Skipper Expo, BIM
teamed up with ReCreate, a national social enterprise, to divert
certain fishing net materials aimed for landfill to be repurposed
towards creative projects. Clean and unused net cut offs provide
inventive art materials and ReCreate provide these art materials
to groups that may not ordinarily have access to supplies. To date,
ReCreate has provided over 500 tonnes of materials that have been
re-used by over 5,000 childrens art and play projects. BIM
are encouraging fishermen to donate clean materials to the programme.
more information on any of the sustainability initiatives, please
visit www.bim.ie or to sign up for the BIM Responsibly Sourced Seafood
Standard email RSSstandard@bim.ie