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Mar 28 - Court Grants Increased 'Spill' to Aid Endangered Columbia/Snake River Salmon


Mar 24 - StarKist Goes Bold With New Tuna Pouch Flavors


Mar 23 - Worldwide Industry, NGOs Advocate for Policy Changes in Tuna Fisheries in 2017


Mar 22 - Western Pacific Council to Tackle Management in Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument


Mar 21 - SeaWeb Names 16 Finalists for 2017 Seafood Champion Awards


Mar 21 - Mariner Seafood Prepared for Retail Distribution of GO WILD Brand That Extends Fresh Shelf Life


Mar 20 - San Diego's Catalina Offshore Products Launches Domestically Caught Hook and Line Canned Tuna


Mar 17 - Oregon State Study Says Workplace Injuries Rising in Seafood Processing Sector


Mar 17 - NGO’s Stumble at Start of Boston Seafood Show with Call for Mexican Shrimp Boycott


Mar 16 - Whole Foods' New Canned Tuna Policy: Only Pole-and-Line, Troll, or Handline Caught Tuna By 2018


Mar 14 - Thai Union Donates $50,000 to Support of East Indonesian Tuna FIPs


Mar 14 - Soy Aquaculture Program,. Soybean Export Council Launch Next Version of Feed Forumlation Database


Mar 13 - Seafood.com News Summary Monday March 13, 2017


Mar 13 - Bumble Bee Subsidiary Anova Foods Gets Labor Practices Certified at Vietnamese Tuna Processing Plant


Mar 9 - Major Retailer Commits to Source Tuna from One-by-One-Caught Fishery in Maldives


Mar 7 - Chicken of the Sea Frozen Foods Enters Scallop Business in Marketing Deal with Northern Wind


Mar 6 - FDA Updates February Refusals; Shows Dip in Rejections from 2016 But Filth Still Targeted


Mar 6 - Mariner Seafood to Debut GO WILD Brand of Vacum Packed Line of Wild Caught Seafood at Boston


Feb 24 - Seafood.com News Summary Friday February 24, 2017


Feb 24 - MSC Streamlines Assessment in Pilot Program for Echebastar Indian Ocean Skipjack Tuna


Feb 23 - Walton Foundation to Continue $32 Million Investment Plan to Boost Indonesia's Seafood Exports


Feb 21 - Feds Quickly Exempting Fishery Regulations Stalled by Federal Freeze Order


Feb 20 - Seafood.com News Summary Monday February 20, 2017


Feb 20 - Russia's Quota Incentive Program Does Not Spur Crab Producers to Place Domestic Shipbuilding Orders


Feb 20 - Effective Management Can Navigate Climate Impacts on the Fisheries


Feb 17 - Seafood.com News Summary Friday February 17, 2017


Feb 17 - Feds to Analyze Environmental Impacts of Western Pacific Longline Fisheries for Bigeye and Tuna


Feb 17 - Bumble Bee Adds Flavors and Launches Snack Kit Packaging to Tuna Pouch Lineup


Feb 16 - Seafood.com News Summary Thursday February 16, 2017


Feb 16 - IATTC Makes Progress on Decreasing Effort on Bigeye and Yellowfin Tunas


Feb 14 - World Bank Report Says Fisheries Reform with Catch Limits Shows Promising Results


Feb 10 - Hawaiian Seafood Council Refutes AP's Labor Abuse Claims in Commercial Longliner Fleet


Feb 7 - Strong Demand and Cultural Preferences for Seafood Driving Up Prices in China for New Year Sales


Jan 30 - Western Pacific Council Director Says MPAs Must Be Targeted and Scientifically Supported


Jan 27 - NPFMC Director Chris Oliver Receives Massive Industry-Wide Support to be NOAA's Next Fisheries Admin


Jan 25 - Seafood.com News Summary Wednesday January 25, 2017


Jan 25 - New ISSF Report Points Out Few MSC Certified Tuna Fisheries Meet Harvest Control Standard


Jan 23 - Unfortunate Decision on Bairdi Suggests Alaska Failing its Fisheries Obligations in Age of Austerity


Jan 19 - FDA Says 90% of Fish Species are "Best Choice" for Pregnant Women in Confusing Final Guidance


Jan 16 - Indonesian company PT Karyacipta Buanasentosa Obtains Friend of the Sea Certification for Tuna


Jan 13 - Another Seafood Mislabeling Study Suggests Intentional Species Substitution Without Any Proof


Jan 10 - Chicken of the Sea Int'l Launches 10-Week Challenge to Get More Americans to Eat Seafood


Jan 9 - NFI Sues NOAA Over New Seafood Fraud Import Rules Claiming Regulatory Overreach


Jan 6 - Starkist Enlists "Full House" Star Candace Cameron Bure as Newest Spokesperson


Jan 5 - Seafood.com News Summary Thursday January 5, 2017


Jan 5 - FDA Mahi Rejections Highest Since 2012 as Filth Accounts for 65% of All Seafood Refusals in 2016


Jan 5 - PNA Expects to Double its MSC-Certified Tuna Harvest in 2017


Dec 29 - WESPAC Council Questions Impact of Marine Monuments


Dec 28 - Philippines' Century Pacific Buys Controlling Stake in Chinese Distributors from Thai Union


Dec 28 - NOAA releases Pacific Action Plan For Climate Science


Dec 22 - Seafood.com News Summary Thursday December 22, 2016


Dec 22 - Second Bumble Bee Sales Executive Pleads Guilty to Canned Tuna Price Fixing Conspiracy


Dec 19 - Seafood.com News Summary Monday, December 19, 2016


Dec 19 - Zhangzidao and Sojitz Build Second Factory in Dalian to Expand Super Frozen Tuna, Salmon Business


Dec 16 - Western Pacific Council Hopes Obama Recognizes Monuments' Effects on Hawaii Swordfish, Tuna Fleets


Dec 16 - Massive Smear Article in Businessweek Aims to Push Shrimp Imports Under USDA Inspection


Dec 15 - Seafood.com News Summary Thursday December 15, 2016


Dec 9 - Kim Gorton Testifies on Absurdity of USDA Catfish Regulations at House Hearing


Dec 9 - Obama Administration Publishes Final Rule on IUU and Seafood Fraud; Shrimp Implementation Delayed


Dec 9 - Thai Union, World Tuna Purse Seine Organization Sign Mou to Promote Fair Labor Practices


Dec 8 - Seafood.com News Summary Thursday December 8, 2016


Dec 8 - Vice President of Sales at Bumble Bee Pleads Guilty to Canned Tuna Price Fixing Conspiracy


Dec 8 - ISSF and 20 NGO Partners, Including WWF and MSC, Appeal to Pacific Tuna Comm. to Adopt Harvest Rules


Dec 8 - House Democrats Hold Forum on Combating Slavery At Sea; Focused on Hawaii


Dec 7 - Seafood.com News Summary Wednesday December 7, 2016


Dec 7 - In Blistering Critique, WWF Says MSC Financial Goals Weakened Its Standards for Indian Ocean Tuna


Dec 7 - FDA Seafood Refusals Tick Down in November But Filth Keeps 2016 Rejections at Record Pace


Dec 6 - EU and the Cook Islands: New Fisheries Partnership Starts


Dec 5 - Seafood.com News Summary Monday December 5, 2016


Dec 1 - ISSF Calls for Continued Cuts to Bigeye Landings, Reduction in FADs in Pacific


Dec 1 - Poland’s Fish Production, Consumption on the Rise with More Herring, Smoked Salmon


Nov 30 - Subway Joins International Pole & Line Foundation in Support of Responsibly Harvested Tuna


Nov 29 - Seafood Suppliers, Retailers ask WCPFC to Set Interim Harvest Reference Points for Tuna and By-catch


Nov 28 - 2016 ICCAT Meeting Combats IUU Fishing, but Fails to Protect Young Bigeye or Yellowfin Tuna


Nov 23 - Seafood.com News Summary Wednesday November 23, 2016


Nov 23 - Oregon, Washington Take Caution, Delay Commercial Dungeness Season for More Domoic Acid Testing


Nov 22 - Pew Mostly Disappointed with ICCAT Commission Outcomes But Does Support Science-Backed Decisions


Nov 22 - ICCAT Commission Sets Catch Limits for Mediterranean Swordfish and Other Billfish for First Time


Nov 21 - PSPA Hires Dr. Kris Lynch to Replace Retiring Dennis Phalen


Nov 17 - Clean Seas Gets $10,000 Grant to Improve Feed Ratios for its Farmed Yellowtail Kingfish


Nov 16 - Peru and Ecuador's Mahi Industries Update FIP Progress During WWF Workshop


Nov 16 - Nature Conservancy Challenges Data Scientists to Improve Electronic Monitoring Aboard Tuna Vessels


Nov 16 - Pope Francis Weighs in On Fisheries Issues, Including Trafficking, for World Fisheries Day Nov. 21


Nov 15 - Canada and Chile Make Big Effort at Qingdao Fisheries and SFd Expo; Seek Chinese Investment as Well


Nov 15 - MSC Calls for 2nd Round of Projects to Apply for its Global Fisheries Sustainability Fund


Nov 10 - ISSF Praises Progress at ICCAT Prior to 2016 Meeting; Calls for More Monitoring of FADs


Nov 10 - Trouble at Tsukiji: World's Biggest Fish Market Caught in Controversy


Nov 9 - California's Dungeness Fishery to Start as Scheduled on November 15; OR and WA Optimistic


Nov 7 - Seafood.com News Summary Monday November 7, 2016


Nov 7 - Thai Union Posts $1 Billion in Q3 Sales; Second Straight Record Quarter


Nov 7 - Sea Delight's Traceability Policy to Improve Data Collection for Mahi, Tuna, Snapper, Swordfish


Nov 4 - FDA Seafood Refusals Climb 20% in October


Nov 4 - Future of Fish Hails the Maldives' New Fisheries Information System a Big Step Forward for Tuna Mana


Nov 4 - Atlantic Cod: the Good, the Bad, and the Rebuilding


Nov 2 - Seafood.com News Summary Wednesday November 2, 2016


Nov 2 - ISSF Strengthens Tuna Sustainability Standards


Nov 1 - Albertsons Expands Commitment to Responsible Seafood Sourcing Under Seafood Watch


Oct 31 - John West New Zealand Meets Goal to Use Only MSC-Certified Pacific Tuna in Canned Products


Oct 27 - US Shrimp Consumption Unchanged in 2015 But Easily Maintains Number One Spot in NFI's Top Ten List


Oct 26 - NOAA Says Seafood Consumption Heading in Right Direction in US, as 2015 Per Capita Number Jumps


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Court Grants Increased 'Spill' to Aid Endangered Columbia/Snake River Salmon

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Seafood News] - March 28, 2017

PORTLAND, OR — More water for more salmon in 2018.

Portland U.S. District Court Judge Michael Simon ruled Monday that federal dam operators on the Columbia and Snake rivers must increase water releases over spillways to improve survival rates for juvenile salmon migrating to the ocean starting in 2018.

Simon found that current operation of eight federal dams is causing continued irreparable harm to imperiled salmon and steelhead and that increased “spill” provides safer passage for juvenile salmon navigating ...

Full Story »

Worldwide Industry, NGOs Advocate for Policy Changes in Tuna Fisheries in 2017

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] - March 23, 2017

Washington, DC – A diverse, global group of commercial and non-profit organizations has joined the International Seafood Sustainability Foundation’s (ISSF) call for immediate improvements on tuna management, including developing harvest strategies, strengthening monitoring, control and surveillance tools, and improving the management of fish aggregating devices (FADs).

A March 21 outreach letter to four tuna Regional Fishing Management Organizations (RFMO) was co-signed by 83 nongovernment organizations, tuna processing companies...

Full Story »

SeaWeb Names 16 Finalists for 2017 Seafood Champion Awards

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] March 21, 2017

SeaWeb announced 16 finalists for the 2017 Seafood Champion Awards who have demonstrated brilliance and tenacity in working across borders, language barriers and industries to change our relationship with the sea. From fish cops in East Africa to the creator of easily replicated 3-D ocean farms, and from a chef who cycled across Canada promoting sustainable seafood to a company whose solar-powered data collector puts small-scale fishing boats on the map, these Champions show an inspiring level of ingenuity and commitment

Full Story »

San Diego's Catalina Offshore Products Launches Domestically Caught Hook and Line Canned Tuna

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] March 20, 2017

Catalina Offshore Products has launched its own brand of sustainable, locally harvested, premium canned tuna that features domestically harvested hook-and-line Eastern Pacific bigeye and yellowfin.

Catalina’s Choice Solid Pack Tuna in Olive Oil and Catalina’s Choice Smoked Solid Pack Tuna in Olive Oil will be distributed to wholesalers, restaurants, retail customers and institutions including schools and hospitals.

Full Story »

NGO’s Stumble at Start of Boston Seafood Show with Call for Mexican Shrimp Boycott

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Editorial] by John Sackton  March 17, 2017

A group of 45 conservation organizations led by the Natural Resources Defense Council, will target seafood distributors and retailers at the Boston Seafood Show to urge them to boycott Mexican shrimp.  Trader Joe's will also be a focal point for this campaign.

The hastily arranged campaign, to save the Vaquita Porpoise, ignores all the efforts that are being made in favor of the one tool in the NGO toolkit: boycotts.

A well-known saying is that when your only tool is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail.  The NGO's have targeted 32 seafood companies, including many of the main distributors ...

Full Story »

Thai Union Donates $50,000 to Support of East Indonesian Tuna FIPs 

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] March 14, 2017

Thai Union Group will donate $50,000 to fishery improvement projects (FIPs) in East Indonesia.

The donation is in line with Thai Union’s sustainability strategy, SeaChange, and its ambitious aim to ensure 100 percent of its branded tuna is sustainably sourced with a commitment of achieving a minimum of 75 percent by 2020. As part of the new tuna strategy, Thai Union is investing $90 million in initiatives that will increase the supply of sustainable tuna. This includes establishing 11 new FIPs around the world...

Full Story »

As Season Wraps, Bering Sea Crabbers Focus on New Rules, Harvest Policy

As the Bering Sea crab fleet pulls the last of their snow crab pots, attention is quickly pivoting to the Board of Fish meeting being held next week. The season will likely wrap up with landings very close to the season's allocated quota. The supplemental March 20-24 Board of Fish meeting is drawing the interest of all crabbers, as the seven-member board will deal with king and tanner crab issues from Prince William Sound west to Kodiak, the Aleutians, and the Bering Sea. Submitting seven proposals for Bering Sea bairdi, the Alaska Bering Sea Crabbers (ABSC) is focused on crab bycatch, gear efficiencies, and fishing dates. “But even more important, and what’s not on the agenda,” says Tyson Fick, executive director of ABSC, “are the ongoing conversations with Fish and Game about the stock harvest strategy for bairdi.”

Canada announced a $325 million budget for the Atlantic Fisheries Fund. The fund was announced last summer but federal Fisheries Minister Dominic LeBlanc only made the budget public Friday. Representatives from Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and P.E.I., were on hand at the Halifax Stanfield International Airport to offer their support to the initiative, despite the fact no province has yet formally signed onto the agreement to make the money available to their province. "I am confident that this new $325-million federal investment will solidify the importance of seafood and fish to the economy of Atlantic Canada," LeBlanc said.

In other news, major Seattle-based crab and seafood distributor Keyport LLC is celebrating its 20th anniversary this month just one year after the company posted record sales. The company was founded by industry veteran Darryl K. Pedersen, with day-to-day operations handled by his sons Mark and Kurt. Last year, the company posted record sales. Keyport said it will release several new products this year to continue its growth. "“Kurt and I are excited to see the growth we are experiencing due to our continued development of fisheries, innovative products, unique partnerships and we’re particularly optimistic with our new product line up in 2017," said Mark Pedersen, President & CEO at Keyport.

Meanwhile, a three-month project that promoted Bristol Bay sockeye salmon in Boulder, Colorado boosted sales and is already expanding. The $700,000 Wild Taste, Amazing Place campaign was spawned by the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association, and funded by 1,800 driftnet fishermen who pay a one percent tax on the value of their catches. "We worked with retail staff help and educated them about Bristol Bay and the run, about the unique habitat and the sheer size and that each one of our fishermen is a small independent business," said Becky Martello director of the Bristol Bay Association.

Finally, Anova Food, which is a subsidiary of Bumble Bee Foods, has earned SA8000 social certification for its tuna processing and distribution facility in Vietnam, which confirms that the company's labor practices meet acceptable human rights standards. The scheme is based on the principles of international human rights norms Anova said.

Full Story »

Major Retailer Commits to Source Tuna from One-by-One-Caught Fishery in Maldives

SEAFOODNEWS.COM - March 9, 2017

London -- International retailer Woolworths South Africa has sealed its commitment to responsible tuna fisheries by sourcing all of its own-brand canned tuna from the Maldives’ centuries-old pole-and-line fishery. The traditional ‘one-by-one’ fishing method is widely regarded as the most environmentally and socially responsible means of catching tuna.

“We are proud to be an active proponent in the development of responsible tuna fisheries...

Full Story »

FDA Updates February Refusals; Shows Dip in Rejections from 2016 But Filth Still Targeted

SEAFOODNEWS.COM by Michael Ramsingh - March 6, 2017

The FDA issued more seafood refusal data for the month of February over the weekend, which showed by line item refusals more in line with historical averages but on the decline compared to 2016.  

Last week we reported that the FDA refused just 22 by line items of seafood in the month of February. That figure was far lower from historical averages for the month.

But the FDA does not have a concrete deadline for its monthly refusal data submissions...

Full Story »

Walmart Backs Global Seafood Sustainability Initiative in Seafood Procurement Policy

Walmart has become the latest retailer to align its seafood procurement policies in support of the Global Seafood Sustainably Initiative (GSSI). “By 2025, based on price, availability, quality, customer demand, and unique regulatory environments across our global retail markets, Walmart U.S., Sam’s Club, ASDA, Walmart Canada, Walmart Brazil, Walmart Mexico, and Walmart Central America will require all fresh and frozen, farmed and wild seafood suppliers to source from fisheries who are: Third-party certified as sustainable using Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) or Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP), or certified by a program which follows the FAO Guidelines1 and is recognized by the Global Sustainable Seafood Initiative (GSSI) as such," Walmart says under the seafood policy section on the retailer’s Policies and Guidelines webpage. Walmart is the world’s largest retailer and the second major retailer to back the GSSI policy. “We are very pleased to see Walmart join the ranks of leading companies that committed to GSSI’s non-competitive approach to building confidence in seafood certification," said GSSI Program Director Herman Wisse.

The Marine Stewardship Council has developed a simplified assessment process and is running a pilot program to test the process in the Echebastar Indian Ocean Skipjack Tuna fishery, which failed certification in 2015. The pilot program “aims to simplify the assessment process – reducing complexity and cost whilst improving effectiveness of stakeholder engagement and maintaining credibility,” according to MSC. The process to certify Echebastar IO Skipjack now proceeds through a first round of stakeholder comments on the “review of the desk review report.” The stakeholder comment period is open until 15 March 2017. Then the site visits for the fishery are planned, the first in Bilbao, Spain the week of March 27, 2017 followed by a site visit in the Seychelles the week of April 3, 2017.

In other news, The Scottish Salmon Company reported higher sales in 2016 as globally higher salmon prices helped offset production declines from ongoing sea lice problems. “Industry wide biological challenges and mortalities reported in the previous quarter continued to impact on expected harvest volumes and drove up production and operating costs by 15 percent,“ the company said. “Higher prices did help to mitigate the effect of the volume losses and operating revenues for the full year showed an increase,” the company said.

Meanwhile, commercial longline fishing fleets in Alaska are awaiting word about whether the season for halibut and black cod will actually start on March 11th. That’s the date voted on for halibut fishing by the International Pacific Halibut Commission in January. Typically the National Marine Fisheries Service also opens long-line fishing for black cod on the same day. The reason for the uncertainty is an executive order from President Trump in January requiring for every one new regulation issued, at least two prior regulations be identified for elimination.

Finally, the first report of shrimp landings from the Gulf of Mexico in 2017 was released this week and continued to show harvest levels below the five-year-average for this fishery. January is a historically unproductive time of the year for the Gulf shrimp fishery. Between now and May there is little expectation for production relief. This coupled, with last year’s poor commercial season, means Gulf shrimp inventories will remain tight, which is likely to keep market prices for domestic shrimp higher for the time being.

Have a great weekend.

Full Story »

Walton Foundation to Continue $32 Million Investment Plan to Boost Indonesia's Seafood Exports

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] February 23, 2017

The Walton Family Foundation outlined its five-year strategy for sustainable fisheries across Indonesia during The Economist’s fourth annual World Ocean Summit.

The Foundation's strategy is to invest $32 million through the end of 2020 on initiatives that partner with the government, local partners, NGOs and businesses to advance fishing policies and ...

Full Story »

Iceland's Commercial Fishermen Resume Fishing as Labor Deal Gets Narrow Approval

Commercial fishermen in Iceland commenced fishing on Sunday after an agreement was narrowly passed between the major fishermen’s unions and the boat owners. The deal ends a three-month work stoppage for Iceland’s commercial fishermen that walked off the job in November. On Friday, we reported Iceland’s fishing strike could come to a quick end because of a recent decision to sharply raise Iceland’s commercial capelin quota. This deal should ease upwards pressure on cod prices and shrinking inventories in the UK market. The strike was starting to cut into fresh and frozen cod production out of Iceland, which is a major cod supplier to global markets. Additionally, any fears of fresh cod shortages in the US market, particularly on the East Coast, are also likely to fade.

Leading Russian crab producers failed to reach any agreements with domestic shipbuilders to place orders for new ships. According to a recent law passed by the Russian government, crab producers are required to use domestic shipbuilders to build new fishing vessels. in return for quota allocations."Unfortunately, none of Russia's leading crab producers, which participated in the meeting, was able to complete and place a clear order. Each of producers requires ships in accordance with their own, specific needs, which, however, has nothing to do with mass production. Due to this, we were unable to reach any agreements," said Vitaly Gvozdev, a senior representative of Nordic Engineering

In other news, there will be a concerted effort during Alaska's upcoming Board of Fish meetings to end the so-called "fish wars" and move discussions out of the realm of political battles and keep it firmly in the arena of science-based fisheries management that benefits everyone. At the meeting, the board will consider a 174 fishery management proposals. “I’m not going to do a tit-for-tat allocation battle back and forth,” said David Martin, President of the United Cook Inlet Drift Association. “That doesn’t benefit anybody.”

Meanwhile, President Trumps's executive order that requires two regulations be effectively eliminated for each new one that is created could disrupt the implementation of some federal fishery management regulations. The vast majority of federal fisheries regulations do not the standard, meaning routine closures and assessments should proceed as they always have. However, NOAA Fisheries has several regulations currently under consideration that are “significant regulatory actions” including a proposed update to ensure consistent application of rules at federal marine sanctuaries and an effort to combat the spread of illegally caught or fraudulently identified seafood in U.S. markets.

Finally, some analysts say Vietnam's goal to raise its total annual value of shrimp exports to global markets to $10 billion by 2025 might not be realistic. Experts calculate that if the added value of shrimp is doubled by 2025, the country would earn $6 billion from exports. For the $4 billion remainder, Vietnam would have to produce an additional 1 million metric tons of shrimp. And even though the production goal is attainable, analysts say the value of the shrimp will not be high enough to reach the $10 billion goal.

Full Story »

Effective Management Can Navigate Climate Impacts on the Fisheries

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] - February 20, 2017

BOSTON – Fisheries around the world are likely to come under increasing pressure from climate change. But effective, cooperative management approaches can blunt the projected impacts on both fish stocks and on the billions of people who depend on them – and in some cases even improve the health of key fisheries.

“The future is potentially prosperous, but only if we take action now to adapt to the kinds of changes that we now anticipate,” said Christopher Costello, professor of environmental resource economics...

Full Story »

Feds to Analyze Environmental Impacts of Western Pacific Longline Fisheries for  Bigeye and Tuna 

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] - February 17, 2017

HONOLULU -- The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) announced on Monday that it will prepare a Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS) on the U.S. Pacific Island deep-set tuna longline fisheries, which target bigeye tuna.

The PEIS will analyze the environmental impacts of management of deep-set tuna longliners, which operate out of Hawaii, American Samoa, and the U.S. West Coast. The need for the proposed action is to manage deep-set tuna longline fisheries under an adaptive management framework that allows for timely management responses to changing environmental conditions, consistent with domestic and international conservation and management measures.

The PEIS will be developed in coordination with the Western Pacific Fishery Management Council based in Honolulu.

Tuna longline fisheries use two distinct gear types: shallow-set vessels target swordfish near the surface and deep-set vessels target tunas deeper than 100 meters...

Full Story »

Nova Scotia Tests Project with Chinese Online Retailer Tmall  to Export Only Premium Quality Lobsters

Three Nova Scotia lobsters exporters and Chinese online retailer Tmall agreed to participate in a pilot project that will ensure Chinese consumers are getting premium lobsters. During this project, which is to run from May through to September, three Nova Scotia companies will export 300,000 live lobsters to be sold through Tmall. Under the deal inked by Nova Scotia and Tmall, which is part of Alibaba's e-commerce business, lobster exporters will submit to a quality-control initiative. This will include a quality standards manual, a training program and regular audits at participating export plants in Nova Scotia and the receiver sites in China. “The online market in China is a huge, huge business opportunity and we’re seeing this as an opportunity to reach new customers," said Robert MacDonald, Gidney’s president and general manager.

Alaskan cod and pollock fishing and processing in Adak has been put on hold for the second straight year. According to Adak city officials, fishermen do not want to catch pollock because of low prices. Meanwhile, the city's processing plant said it would likely only process pollock if it could also start receiving cod deliveries. However, cod fishermen are currently suing to stop a 2015 NPFMC decision that requires them to deliver tons of their harvest to Adak.

In other news, Hawaii lawmakers advanced a bill that requires more oversight of the commercial fishing industry after an Associated Press investigation found labor abuse aboard US owned and operated commercial tuna longliners. The bill would require fishing boat owners who want a commercial license in Hawaii to provide state officials with a copy of employment contracts held with every fisherman on board before the license is granted. The bill passed the House Committee on Ocean, Marine Resources and Hawaiian Affairs Tuesday and it goes next to the Judiciary Committee.

Meanwhile, the European Parliament has approved the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) with Canada. The deal, which has been seven years in the making, will eliminate almost all trade tariffs between the European Union and Canada. Economists say tariffs on Canada's seafood exports to the EU are likely to be phased out over the next three to seven years under CETA.

Finally, Eastern Pacific fisheries managers finally reached an agreement last week on fishing for Pacific bigeye and yellowfin tunas. It took more than seven months and the measures are not without criticism, but the regulations align with other international management and acknowledge excessive fishing effort may harm the tuna resources.

Full Story »

StarKist Goes Bold With New Tuna Pouch Flavors

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Seafood News] - March 24, 2017

PITTSBURGH -- StarKist Co., recently announced the launch of three new BOLD product innovations that add to the company's growing StarKist Tuna & Salmon Creations line of single-serve pouch products. Each BOLD pouch features a convenient, tear-open and no-drain design, making it easy to enjoy tuna or salmon straight from the pouch or in a simple meal. The gluten-free varieties of BOLD flavor pouches are available now: Tuna Creations BOLD Thai Chili Style; Tuna Creations BOLD Jalapeño; and Tuna Creations BOLD Hot Buffalo Style.

"More than ever, consumers are craving bolder flavors and everyday convenience," Andy Mecs, Director of Marketing & Innovation

Full Story »

Western Pacific Council to Tackle Management in Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] - March 22, 2017

At this week's Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council in Honolulu, members are developing new fishing rules for the marine national monument that was expanded last year and decided which species will be under federal management as components of the area's ecosystem.

The Presidential proclamation under the Antiquities Act that expanded the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument calls for closing offshore commercial fisheries...

Full Story »

Mariner Seafood Prepared for Retail Distribution of GO WILD Brand That Extends Fresh Shelf Life

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] March 21, 2017

Mariner Seafood launched a line of wild caught seafood items at the Seafood Expo North America in Boston that uses a patented technology that gives retailers an option to feature the items in fresh seafood cases.

The GO WILD seafood brand uses patented, breathable film that allows oxygen to flow through the products. This super chill pack technology extends the shelf life of the portioned out seafood products...

Full Story »

Oregon State Study Says Workplace Injuries Rising in Seafood Processing Sector

EAFOODNEWS.COM [Seafood News] - March 17, 2017

CORVALLIS, Ore. - A review of workers' compensation claims indicates that workers in Oregon's seafood processing industry are suffering serious injuries at higher rates than the statewide average, and the rate of injuries appears to be on the rise, researchers at Oregon State University have found.

Researchers examined 188 "disabling" claims, or claims from employees who missed work, were hospitalized overnight or whose injuries left them permanently impaired. They found that the average annual rate of claims was 24 per 1,000 workers, Laura Syron, a doctoral student in OSU's College of Public Health ...

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Whole Foods' New Canned Tuna Policy: Only Pole-and-Line, Troll, or Handline Caught Tuna By 2018

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] - March 16, 2017 

AUSTIN, Texas – By January 2018, all canned tuna sold at Whole Foods Market must come from fisheries using only pole-and-line, troll, or handline catch methods, all of which take fish one by one, preventing bycatch and creating more jobs in coastal communities.

Whole Foods Market is the first national retailer to create such stringent standards for canned tuna, which is among the three most consumed seafood items in the United States.

The policy's aim is to reduce overfishing and bycatch, and support fishing communities...

Full Story »

Soy Aquaculture Program, Soybean Export Council Launch Next Version of Feed Formulation Database

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] March 17, 2017

The International Soy in Aquaculture Program of the U.S. Soybean Export Council (USSEC) has announced the rollout of the Stage 2 version of the International Aquaculture Feed Formulation Database (IAFFD), a standardized tool for feed formulators around the world

The first version of the IAFFD (originally known as the Asian Aquaculture Feed Formulation Database or AAFFD), developed in 2014-2015, attempted to take a page out of the training approach with terrestrial animal feed formulators by creating a standardized database of nutritional information for aquaculture species and key feed ingredients...

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Bumble Bee Subsidiary Anova Foods Gets Labor Practices Certified at Vietnamese Tuna Processing Plant

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] March 13, 2017

Anova Food, which is a subsidiary of Bumble Bee Foods, has earned SA8000 social certification for its tuna processing and distribution facility in Vietnam, which confirms that the company's labor practices meet acceptable human rights standards.  

Anova said SA8000 Certification is a rare feat in the seafood industry.

The company said the certification add to its repertoire of sustainability and social responsibility programs....

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Chicken of the Sea Frozen Foods Enters Scallop Business in Marketing Deal with Northern Wind

SEAFOODNEWS.COM by Michael Ramsingh - March 7, 2017

Chicken of the Sea Frozen Foods (COSFF) will enter the scallop business after the major distributor announced a marketing agreement with Massachusetts-based Northern Wind.

According to the agreement the companies will work together to provide customers with high quality, responsibly sourced frozen scallops.

Northern Wind is one of the largest Atlantic scallop producers in the US with contracted vessels harvesting an estimated 20 percent of the allowable catch along the eastern seaboard...

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Mariner Seafood to Debut GO WILD Brand of Vacum Packed Line of Wild Caught Seafood at Boston

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] March 6, 2017

Massachusetts-based seafood distributor Mariner Seafood will debut its GO WILD™ brand of super chilled, grab-and-go seafood at the upcoming Seafood Expo North America.

The ready-to-prepare line of wild-caught seafood utilizes vacuum skin packaging (VSP) technology adapted to meet seafood’s special requirements.

"We believe our GO WILD™ brand of wild-caught fish, shrimp and scallops will transform the way super chilled or frozen wild-caught seafood is brought to market," said Jack Flynn, President of Mariner Seafood...

 

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MSC Streamlines Assessment in Pilot Program for Echebastar Indian Ocean Skipjack Tuna

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] by Peggy Parker - February 24, 2017

The Marine Stewardship Council has developed a simplified assessment process and is running a pilot program to test the process in the Echebastar Indian Ocean Skipjack Tuna fishery, which failed certification in 2015.

The pilot program “aims to simplify the assessment process – reducing complexity and cost whilst improving effectiveness of stakeholder engagement and maintaining credibility,” according to MSC.

One of the reasons the Echebaster IO tuna fishery was not afforded the MSC logo two years ago was that the regional management group had not adopted a harvest control rule or reference points for the fishery, which in 2015 included skipjack, yellowfin, and bigeye. The Indian Ocean Tuna Commission has since adopted these management tools....

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Feds Quickly Exempting Fishery Regulations Stalled by Federal Freeze Order

SEAFOODNEWS.COM by Michael Ramsingh - February 21, 2017

The federal freeze on approving new regulatory measures issued by the Trump Administration last month has stalled some fishery policies across the country. However, regional management councils and lawmakers have been able to secure quick exemptions from the freeze for some quota allocation changes and other vital fishery management protocols.

Last month, the White House issued a memo that called for a freeze on the implementation new federal regulations for further review.

The notice said regulations that have been sent to the official Federal Register but were not published,  should be withdrawn for review and approval.

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Russia's Quota Incentive Program Does Not Spur Crab Producers to Place Domestic Shipbuilding Orders

SEAFOODNEWS.COM by Eugene Gerden - February 20, 2017

Leading Russian crab producers have failed to reach an agreement with the domestic shipbuilders, regarding the placement of orders for new crab vessels, which is required by the recently amended Russian legislation in the field of fish and seafood production, according to recent statements of an official spokesman of Russian Rosrybolovstvo.

The recent decision of the Russian government to include crabs in the "under keel" quota program (which involves placement of orders for the building of fishing trawlers at domestic shipyards in exchange of quotas’ provision) became a big surprise for domestic crab producers, which have been forced to start talks with  domestic shipbuilders, regarding with the building of ships at their capacities, amid the prospects of inevitable tighthening of competition in the sector... 

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Red Chamber to Allow Federal Observers Aboard its Red Shrimp Boats in Argentina to Meet FIP Goal

Red Chamber said it will participate with Argentina’s national fisheries research institute INIDEP in a fishery observer program for the inshore Patagonian pink shrimp fishery. Argentina’s Patagonian pink shrimp are also known as red shrimp or Pleoticus muelleri. They are a wild-caught coldwater shrimp. Red Chamber Argentina (RCA) said it committed to the observer program for the Patagonian shrimp in order to fulfill goals listed in a Fishery Improvement Program for the fishery that the company is participating in. “We are looking forward to working with INIDEP to track juvenile hake bycatch in the red shrimp fishery and make progress towards management improvements,” said RCA President Marcelo Mou.

Cod prices in UK markets are on the rise from the combination of the prolonged fishermen's strike in Iceland and because of high salmon prices. Analysts say high-priced salmon has UK motivated consumers to switch to lower-priced cod. However, UK cod supplies are starting to feel the pinch from Iceland's prolong fishermen's strike that started in November. In a related story, European fish market analysts at Marko Fish say Iceland's sharply higher capelin quota announced this week could motivate Iceland's fishermen to end their strike. “There are higher probabilities that the strike will be resolved in the next few days than before due to the issue of enlarged quota for capelin of 196 thousand that will be Iceland’s share of the quota. Due to the relatively short catch window for the capelin the pressure to end the strike is increased,” said Marko Fish.

In other news, Vietnam's largest pangasius exporter Vinh Hoan purchased all of the assets to pangasius processors Thanh Binh Dong Thap Seafood for an undisclosed amount. The move increases Vinh Hoan's processing capacity by 20 percent according to a local report.

Meanwhile, NMFS said it will prepare a Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS) on the U.S. Pacific Island deep-set tuna longline fisheries, which target bigeye tuna. The PEIS will analyze the environmental impacts of management of deep-set tuna longliners, which operate out of Hawaii, American Samoa, and the U.S. West Coast. "The PEIS is a proactive step in the management of deep-set tuna longline fisheries," said Western Pacific Fishery Management Council Executive Director Kitty M. Simonds. "It streamlines environmental review for future management decisions and facilitates the ability of fisheries to adaptively respond to changing conditions."

Finally, the United Fishermen of Alaska flagged concerns about House Bill 511, an income tax bill that begins hearings today in the House Finance Committee. UFA says many fishermen will have "major difficulties" complying with withholding requirements on payments to fishing crew.

Have a great weekend.

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Bumble Bee Adds Flavors and Launches Snack Kit Packaging to Tuna Pouch Lineup

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Seafood News] - February 17, 2017

Bumble Bee Seafoods has introduced several new flavors to its Prime Fillet line, Seasoned Tuna Pouches and Snack on the Run! kits. 
 
“Consumers are looking for nutritious, affordable meal solutions to fill their pantries,” said Dave Melbourne, Bumble Bee senior vice president, consumer marketing and corporate social responsibility, in the statement. “Bumble Bee’s new flavor varieties offer simple, delicious ways to incorporate more seafood into you and your family’s diet.”

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IATTC Makes Progress on Decreasing Effort on Bigeye and Yellowfin Tunas

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Seafood News] - February 16, 2017

Eastern Pacific fisheries managers finally reached an agreement last week on fishing for bigeye and yellowfin tunas. It took more than seven months and the measures are not without criticism, but the measures align with other international management and acknowledge excessive fishing effort may harm the tuna resources.
 
The 21 members of the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Association agreed to align the total purse seine catch limits for yellowfin and bigeye tuna by set type and that there are no national allocations.
 
The purse seine vessels of capacity classes 4 to 6 (more than 182 metric tons carrying capacity) and longline vessels more than 24 meters of all members and cooperating non-members of the IATTC must stop fishing in the Convention Area for 62 days in 2017, according to the IATTC resolution. The closures must be in one of two periods: between July 29 and Sept. 28 or between Nov. 18, 2017 and Jan. 18, 2018.
 
The members did not agree to limit ...

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