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Mexican tuna certification process moves forward


Tuna catch. (Photo: SAGARPA)

Click on the flag for more information about MexicoMEXICO
Thursday, February 12, 2015, 01:00 (GMT + 9)
The head of the National Commission of Aquaculture and Fisheries (CONAPESCA), Mario Aguilar Sanchez, ensures that the evaluation process several tuna companies in the country are undergoing to obtain certification of sustainable fisheries by the international organization Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) "is on the right path."
The Mexican tuna fishery has already been awarded recognition from the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) for its sustainable fishing practices.
"The important thing is that certifications, when they are serious, as in this case, do give consumers accurate information when choosing which products to consume," Aguilar Sanchez stressed.
Moreover, the certifications are "an incentive for producers to obtain recognition for sustainable practices in their operations," he added.
CONAPESCA commissioner recalled that four of the largest Mexican companies that catch yellowfin tuna - integrating the Pacific Alliance for Sustainable Tuna (APAS) - established an agreement to initiate an assessment process to obtain MSC certification, a process that is "progressing well".
The fishing firms involved are Grupomar, Herdez, Pesca Azteca and Pesca Chiapas.
The Alliance has been working for a year and a half ago to formally enter the certification process of the Mexican fishery by the MSC.
According to CONAPESCA, the capturing methods of the national tuna fleet meet the highest standards of protection of dolphins, and abide by the Agreement on the International Programme for the Conservation of Dolphins (AIDCP) and the principles established in the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries.
The Mexican fleet fishes more than 153,000 tonnes of tuna annually, a volume that places it in second place in the national fish production.
In 2013, this fishery recorded revenues of MXN 1.88 billion (USD 126.4 million), 44 per cent more than in 2012, when MXN 1.3 billion (USD 87.8 million) were obtained.
Globally, the MSC certified fish accounts for about 7 per cent of all seafood from wild catch.
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