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Half of Pacific Wild Salmon Fisheries Well Managed

05 December 2014

US - Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP) has released its annual review of the state of wild salmon fisheries. The analysis covers 82 principal Pacific salmon fisheries that target five species (pink, chum, sockeye, coho, and Chinook salmon) across the North Pacific and account for 95 per cent of the global wild-capture commercial salmon harvest.

Half of fish come from ‘well or reasonably’ managed fisheries, the other half from fisheries that need ‘significant improvements’.

The fisheries are rated as either category A, B or C depending on the quality of the management and the status of the stock.

An ‘A’ fishery is considered ‘very well managed’ while a ‘B’ category fishery is considered to be ‘reasonably well managed’.

A category ‘C’ fishery is considered to be poorly managed and in need of significant improvements.

The report concludes that:

  • 52 per cent of the total volume of Pacific salmon comes from well or reasonably managed fisheries (Categories A and B). This includes 99 per cent of coho, 87 per cent of sockeye, 60 per cent of pink, 48 per cent of Chinook, and 23 per cent of chum salmon global harvest.

  • 48 per cent of the total volume of Pacific salmon comes from fisheries in need of significant improvements (Category C). 22 per cent is accounted for by Russian fisheries with illegal fishing issues; 13 per cent by Japanese chum fisheries with hatchery issues; and 10 per cent by Prince William Sound, Alaska, fisheries with hatchery issues.

  • 74 per cent of Alaskan, 95 per cent of British Columbian, and 47 per cent of Russian salmon harvest volumes come from well or reasonably managed fisheries.

  • All of the Pacific Northwest US and Japanese fisheries included in this report need significant improvements.

  • In 2013–2014, the salmon sector exhibited increased engagement in the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) programme. Over half (50.3 per cent ) of global supply now comes from fisheries either certified by or under full assessment by MSC.

  • Scoring of Category C fisheries indicated four priority areas where improvements are needed: (1) illegal fishing, (2) hatcheries, (3) harvest control practices for depleted stocks, and (4) offshore fisheries.

Further Reading

You can view the full report by clicking here.

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