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Tilapia farm becomes first Asian aquaculture operation joining iBAP programme

God Bless Tilapia Bao Fang Farm. (Photo Credit: GAA)

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Thursday, May 07, 2015, 23:50 (GMT + 9)

China’s God Bless Tilapia Bao Fang Farm is Asia’s first aquaculture operation, and the third worldwide, to enrol in the Global Aquaculture Alliance’s new iBAP programme.

Launched in February, the iBAP programme — the “i” in “iBAP” represents “improvement”— is designed to provide assistance and encouragement to aquaculture facilities interested in pursuing Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) certification. Those facilities that enrol in iBAP agree to a step-by-step, deadline-driven improvement plan. iBAP incentivizes facilities to make the improvements necessary to apply for BAP certification.

God Bless Tilapia — which enrolled in the iBAP programme on 28 April and has nine months to complete the programme — is located in Wenchang, Hainan. The tilapia is processed at the Eternal Spring and Tongwei plants, and the tilapia is exported to the US market.

With the support of the Hainan Tilapia Sustainability Alliance, The Fishin’ Company has partnered with God Bless Tilapia and encouraged and sponsored the farm to enrol in the iBAP programme. The Fishin’ Company says it will do the same with more farms through the Hainan Tilapia Sustainability Alliance.

“The iBAP programme gives the entire supply chain an incredible opportunity to step up and do something that is vital for the industry — engage the highest standards of food safety, traceability and sustainability,” said Manish Kumar, CEO of The Fishin’ Company. “We are thrilled that the door has been opened for everyone who wishes to make an immediate difference, and we at Fishin’ wholeheartedly support this initiative and are very excited to be a part of it.”

“It has always been GAA’s mission to bring small-farm production into the certification fold. iBAP has become an integral piece of this, and the partnership of The Fishin’ Company and God Bless Tilapia will make this a reality,” added Peter Redmond, BAP VP of market development. “We look at this as a tremendous step forward and look to enrol even more facilities in the iBAP programme in short order.”

Also enrolled in the iBAP programme are Salmoprocesos S.A., a salmon processing plant in Chile, and Piscifactorías de los Andes, a trout farm in Peru and the first operation to apply for iBAP.

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