SINGAPORE - The first public comment period for Level 2 of the Southeast Asian Shrimp Aquaculture Improvement Protocol (SEASAIP) is now open until February 1, 2017.
SEASAIP is a tool under the Asian Seafood Improvement Collaborative (ASIC) that combines some of the existing Southeast Asian government standards with key requirements from the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch program’s Aquaculture Standards to offer producers a ladder for improvement.
SEASAIP is overseen by a 14 person Steering Committee including stakeholders from Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia, and the Philippines and is one of the first direct attempts to adapt sustainability programs created in other markets specifically for the Southeast Asian seafood industry. The goal of the SEASAIP program is to find solutions for the gap between the desires of the marketplace and the realities facing producers on the ground.
“Producers are always under pressure, with increasing costs of farming inputs to meet buyer requirements, but nobody hears their voice. SEASAIP offers the opportunity for farmer participation to build solutions together,” says Dr. Le Thanh Luu, Director of the International
Collaborating Center for Aquaculture and Fisheries Sustainability (ICAFIS).
SEASAIP Level 1, which represents the entry point for improvement and is equivalent to a
Seafood Watch “Good Alternative” recommendation, was finalized and approved by the SEASAIP
steering committee and the Seafood Watch program in the Summer of 2016.
Shrimp products in compliance with SEASAIP Level 2 would be equivalent to a Seafood Watch “Best Choice” recommendation. Unlike SEASAIP Level 1, Level 2 is differentiated by species and production system in order to increase the number of options for Seafood Watch “Best Choice” shrimp on the market.
“Ultimately, the tools created from this protocol will provide Seafood Watch business partners
more shrimp options while rewarding the farmers that have worked hard to meet our sustainability standard," said Jennifer Dianto Kemmerly, Monterey Bay Aquarium Director of Global Fisheries and Aquaculture.
This is the first step in the creation of SEASAIP Level 2 standards, the process for which is expected to be completed by the end of 2017. A key next step of the process is to further define and elaborate the spectrum of improvement for the SEASAIP program.
“This is the next step in the SEASAIP process and one that we hope will show the value of what we have been working to achieve with stakeholders,” says Corey Peet, ASIC Programs Director.
TheFishSite News Desk