Norway takes the lead in eco certification

The Norwegian Northeast Arctic cod and haddock fisheries are as of today certified as sustainable by the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC). An MSC-assessment evaluates the fish stocks, sustainable harvesting, the environmental impact of the fisheries and the effectiveness of the management. With this certificate in place Norway is the leading country in documentation of sustainable fisheries.

The Norwegian Northeast Arctic cod and haddock fisheries are as of today certified as sustainable by the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC). An MSC-assessment evaluates the fish stocks, sustainable harvesting, the environmental impact of the fisheries and the effectiveness of the management. With this certificate in place Norway is the leading country in documentation of sustainable fisheries.

”Today, we are proud to receive the official certificate from MSC and announce that the Norwegian cod and haddock fisheries’ sustainability is documented by the MSC certification programme. From this day onwards all Norwegian exporters of Northeast Arctic cod and haddock, having gone through an independent Chain of Custody-certification, may use the MSC ecolabel on their products”, says Rigmor Abel, Director of environmental issues with the Norwegian Seafood Export Council.

The news is celebrated at the Norwegian Pavilion at the European Seafood Exposition in Brussels today. Upon receiving the official certificate from Moody Marine Norway will be the world leader in sustainable fisheries. No other seafood nation holds such a broad spectre of third party certifications for fisheries. Norwegian Exporters, buyers of Norwegian Seafood, MSC, NSEC and Moody Marine will be present at the celebration.

Sustainable Norwegian fisheries
Norwegian fisheries policy and management are based on the principles of sustainable harvest of the marine living resources. Sustainable harvest depends on healthy marine ecosystems. The Norwegian fisheries management system is founded on a long cultural tradition and implies a comprehensive consultative process where important stakeholders are involved in its decision-making. This management system is also based on long-time marine research which contributes to the Norwegian fisheries role as one of the world’s leading in sustainable management.

Sustainable Norwegian cod and haddock fisheries
The Northeast Arctic cod is the largest and strongest cod stock in the world, and together with the Northeast Arctic haddock it represents enduring traditions and a resource-based way of life along the Norwegian coast. These fisheries also constitute important parts of food-traditions around the world, being exported fresh and frozen and as products like clip fish, stockfish and salt fish.

Other schemes as KRAV and Friend of the Sea have also certified Norwegian fisheries as sustainable. KRAV has certified the Norwegian fisheries of cod, haddock and prawns. Friend of the Sea has certified the Norwegian prawns fisheries.

MSC
The Marine Stewardship Council is an international organisation which has developed a certification program and seafood ecolabel for sustainable and well managed fisheries. The MSC-certification is based on third-party assessment of the fisheries by an accredited certifier.

The Norwegian saithe, mackerel and herring have already successfully gone through assessment and received MSC-certification of their fisheries. In short time the inshore cod and haddock fisheries will be certified by the MSC-standards, making about 75% of the Norwegian wild-caught fish certified as environmentally sustainable by various international standards.