Young's publish ten sustainable fishing pledges –

Young’s publish ten sustainable fishing pledges Published:  27 November, 2006

Mike Parker

YOUNG’S, Britain’s largest seafood producer has strengthened its commitment to sustainable fishing with a new list of key pledges.

The list is contained in an impressive and richly illustrated new booklet called ‘Ten Principles for Responsible Fish Procurement’ and detail the rules that govern fish sourcing for the company.

Young’s recently announced a number of important initiatives, including a ban on fish caught by bottom trawl methods and on North Sea cod catches, which, according to some scientific groups, is a fishery under serious threat. Last month Young’s appointed two specialist advisers, David Agnew and Jim Cannon, to help the company in its development of sustainable policies.

The ‘Ten Principles’, as they are called, have been developed by the Young’s sustainability group, a board-driven initiative intended to ensure a sustainable approach throughout the business, which has productions locations on the Humber, in Scotland and Northern Ireland. But Young’s also sources fish from 30 countries around the world.

The publication also highlights the growing importance of the fish stocks and environmental issue in fishing and which is now affecting all the major companies in the UK.

The sustainability group was set up three years ago to play a pivotal cross functional role in defining company policies, and actions in everything from fish procurement to manufacturing, marketing and development.

The principles include pledges to ‘never knowingly’ buy fish which has been caught or farmed illegally, and to deal only with suppliers who operate in an open and responsible manner.

The company has also promised to base its fish procurement decisions on responsible criteria, and to operate a policy of openness on labelling and purchasing decisions. Among the other pledges are a promise to actively support the use of certified sustainable species in the market place, to recognise the need for continuous improvement in both wild capture fishing and the aquaculture sectors, to support research and development into more effective conservation methods and to promote traceability ‘from boat to plate’.

Young’s deputy chief executive Mike Parker said: “The drive for long term sustainability depends on greater transparency in the supply chain and major industry players can contribute to this by openly committing to best practice.

“That is why we felt it was important to highlight the rules that govern our own sourcing strategies. Responsible fisheries has to be a key environmental priority for us because it is the area of sustainable practice in which we feel we can make the biggest difference.”

He added: “Fish remains one of the last major sources of wild caught food on earth. We are a forward thinking company and we are acutely aware of the need for proper management of fisheries around the globe to ensure the long term availability of seafood both now and for future generations. is published by Special Publications. Special Publications also publishes, FISHupdate magazine, Fish Farmer, the Fish Industry Yearbook, the Scottish Seafood Processors Federation Diary, the Fish Farmer Handbook and a range of wallplanners.