The government and selected fishermen societies in India are jointly drafting the country’s first-ever action plan as part of the Fishery Improvement Project (FIP) for Indian oil sardine in Goa and Maharashtra in a bid to preserve the Indian oil sardine stock along the west coast.
The collaboration of those agencies came up with a series of key proposals during the 2nd Steering Committee Meeting held in Panjimon Monday February 19, 2018. They agreed to push for strong practices to promote sustainability in the supply chain of fisheries and related products along the coasts of Goa and Maharashtra, India.
Mr. GovindJeswal IAS, Director and Secretary Fisheries (GOA), appreciated the efforts of the FIP team in developing the proposed framework of the action plan, pointing out that the government will play a key role to enforce measures that bolster fishery sustainability assessments, based on scientific methods adopted by Institutes like the Central Institute of Fisheries Technology, CIFT, CMFRI, etc. The government will also support the implementation of any regulations that will facilitate those sustainable fisheries practices.
Some of the main areas of interest include pushing for more regular stock assessments so that fishermen and industry have good knowledge of the health of the stocks, and the need for better enforcement to ensure that fishermen who obey the law are not penalised by those that don’t.
The steering committee made us of the fishery assessment methodology of the International Fishmeal and Fish Oil Organization the latest version of IFFO Responsible Supply Standard (IFFO RS), which is an internationally accepted standard designed specifically for responsible fisheries according to UN FAO Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries, which was developed, in part, by the government of India.
A representative from CPF India Private Limited said that the company is strongly facilitating thedraft FIP action plan. It will also apply market mechanism to facilitate production under FIP sustainable practices and certify IFFO RS Improver Program. Moreover, the company will also support its stakeholders in the supplychain including fishmeal plant and fisherman by imparting suitable training.
“CPF India has a clear policy to preserve not only environment but also the use of natural resources for sustainability. By doing that, we will take care all stakeholders in our supply chain including fisherman and fishmeal plant to learn more doing businesses on the right way,” he pointed.
In August 2017, Omega Fishmeal and Oil, fishermen societies and CPF India signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) together. The signing ceremony was witnessed by concerned government agencies as well as an international non-government organization – Sustainable Fishery Partnership (SFP).It aimed at improving efficiency of fisheries management and governance, fostering food safety, environmental responsibility, and transparent traceability of fisheries products throughout the supply chain, promoting sustainability in the fisheries products supply chain to meet with international standards.
The fishermen societies and private sector include Ratnadurga Macchimar Society, Adarsh Machchimar Society, Vasco Fishing Boat Owners marketing Co-Op Society Ltd, Zuari Fishermen Marketing Co-Operative Society Ltd, and Omega Fishmeal and Oil Private Limited.