OIA participated in the development of the methodologies which are the base of MSC (Marine Stewardship Council) standards, both for the fisheries certification and for the distribution traceability. OIA is the only Latin American certifier accredited to certify Sustainable Fisheries Systems.
The fishing companies obtain better prices for their products, access new markets, maintain a competitive position in existing markets, show their communities and interested parties an adequate management of fisheries and receive recommendations about changes to improve their management.
The OIA-MSC program promotes the development of management plans and new fisheries and proposes incentives for research and technological development to improve fisheries’ management.
The consumers realize that purchasing products which carry MSC seal they are supporting healthier oceans and environments and therefore, collaborating with fisheries’ future. MSC certification is one of the best options to ensure that consumers will continue enjoying sea products today and in coming years.
After completing the traceability audit (Custody Chain Certification) the certified products can carry an eco-label.
Small fishing companies, national agencies, management authorities or not-for-profit organizations.
There is a global crisis in fish stocks all over the world. When fisheries collapse, not only sea ecosystems are threatened, but also local economies.
Fish products which comply with MSC standard for sustainable and well managed fisheries can carry MSC Ecolabel. This market incentive encourages fisheries to voluntarily seek MSC certification, which directly influences their management.
MSC Ecolabel highlights good fishing practices and provides consumers the certainty that they are not contributing to the over-fishing problem. Besides, it offers seafood consumers real information and the power to have a real influence through their purchasing decisions.
MSC Ecolabel means that the product has been evaluated by an independent certifier as OIA and has reached MSC standard.
All products carrying the Ecolabel also have the following statement: ‘This product comes from a fishery that complies with the environmental standard of the Marine Stewardship Council for well-managed and sustainable fisheries.’
With this information, consumers know that buying products which carry MSC Ecolabel they support healthier seas and environments.
OIA selects a team of national and/or international scientists and experts to evaluate the fishery, who are experienced in covering all aspects of MSC Principles and Criteria.
The team prepares a Preliminary Report that is commented with the applicant, the external reviewers and the general public. OIA’s Certification Committee evaluates the information and allows the Full Report which results in a certification decision.
The estimated time for the different stages of the certification process is:
The MSC program does not presently reach aquaculture operations.
However, there is scope for partially manipulated fisheries, whether in the process of reproduction, growth or fattening.
The MSC evaluation process applies to natural sea and freshwater fisheries.
Natural fish stocks in oceans and terrestrial aquatic systems in the world are being exhausted because of market demands. This is a public and worrying situation.
Despite the world reduction of fish stocks, some fisheries are managing their resources in a responsible way and with a long-term perspective. Buyers of sea products, conservation groups and general public request fisheries actions to demonstrate that they are trying to protect both the environment and the fishing industry’ sustainability.
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