The SFPA advises on changes to generic export health certificates for fishery and shellfish products Oceana EU transparency seafood

Oceana has called on the EU to guarantee full transparency on the sustainability of processed and imported seafood for consumers. Photo: EU Commission

Oceana calls on the EU for full transparency on the sustainability of processed and imported seafood

Consumers lack details on processed and imported fish, including what species they are eating and if these products come from overfished stocks

Oceana urges the EU to require full transparency for all seafood sold on the market, including processed and imported products, so that consumers know what species of fish they are buying, if they come from overfished stocks, and where, how, and when they were caught.

To provide more information to those that eat, buy, and sell seafood, the organisation calls on the EU to include sustainability information on all seafood products. To this end, Oceana has started the Follow the Fish movement and is gathering supporters at Seafood Expo Global, the biggest seafood trade show in the world, taking place in Barcelona from 25–27 April.

The Campaign Director for Illegal Fishing and Transparency at Oceana in Europe, Vanya Vulperhorst, stated that “EU citizens have the right to know more about the fish they eat, particularly when it comes to environmental sustainability and fair labour conditions. Currently, it is very difficult for consumers to know what they are getting when they go to buy their seafood. Making this information available is the best way to avoid unsustainably fished products ending up on our plates”.

To address the current lack of consumer information about seafood, Oceana proposes that the EU develop a mandatory sustainability ranking for all seafood products, which could provide information on the fish we eat and avoid products associated with unsustainable practices and unethical conditions.

Vulperhorst added, “the creation of an EU ranking system for seafood would be a revolutionary opportunity to improve the information for those who buy and sell seafood, and those who eat it.  To be effective, it’s critical that this information system be mandatory, and apply to all EU seafood products, no matter whether they’re fresh or processed, EU-caught or imported.”

The European Commission is currently working on a proposal for a legislative Framework for Sustainable Food Systems and is considering how best to provide EU consumers with information on environmental and social sustainability on all food items, including seafood. There are several options on the table, ranging from reinforcing existing guidelines to creating a new framework for sustainability information, with either a mandatory or voluntary EU-wide system.

Source: Press Release

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