Drive to ensure responsibly produced fishmeal Published: 05 August, 2013
Industry leaders came together in a drive to ensure responsible fishmeal production for the aquaculture feed industry in Asia.
The fish feed industry, major retailers, farmers and leading international organisations met at the 4th Asian Fish Feed Roundtable in Bangkok, hosted by The Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP), on 18 July.
The South East Asian fish feed industry is a large producer of feed for farmed fish globally. Feed is an integral component in aquaculture, but the production and use of feed also represent a major part of the environmental impact of fish farming.
ASC Standards Coordinator Michiel Fransen presented the recently launched Responsible Feed project to the group. Michiel explained how the project would develop the new globally applicable ASC Feed Standard and how this standard is pivotal to the industry moving towards sustainability.
The ASC Feed Standard will set out requirements for the aquaculture feed industry to operate on a more environmentally sound and socially responsible basis. For example, by tracing key ingredients used in fish feed and placing demands on raw material manufacturers to demonstrate that their products are produced responsibly, said Michiel Fransen.
The standard will help move the feed industry towards more sustainable production practices. It will allow producers who can demonstrate their environmentally responsible production methods to gain recognition for their efforts.
The ASC Feed Standard should be ready towards the end of 2015, after which it will be available to anyone who want to use it.
The UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and SFP launched the Southeast Asia Fisheries Improvement Project (FIP) at the meeting. The programme focuses on improving fisheries that produce fishmeal for the Asian fish feed industry.
Major supply chain businesses are actively supporting the project including Aldi, Asda Walmart, Coop, Lyons, Marks & Spencers, Morrisons, Sainsbury, Seachill Icelandic and Thai Union. They have committed to promoting more responsible practices for fishmeal used in aquaculture feed production.