- On 20th February 2017
Fishermen in developing countries will be offered new opportunities to improve the sustainability of their fishing practices, thanks to funding from the Dutch Postcode Lottery. The four-year project, called ‘Fish for Good’, will work with fishers, communities and local partners to map the sustainability of fisheries before providing communities with tools and support to safeguard livelihoods and oceans for future generations.
The Dutch Postcode Lottery has awarded the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) project funding totaling €1.75 million over four years. ‘Fish for Good’ will be delivered in partnership with local NGOs who will provide local knowledge, networks and expertise in ocean conservation, helping independent experts to map and benchmark fisheries to the MSC Fisheries Standard. Countries included in the project proposal for potential partnerships are Indonesia, South African and Mexico.
Good for people and oceans
More than half the world’s traded seafood comes from developing countries. Fish also provides the main source of protein for millions of people in the developing world. Increasing the sustainability of seafood production in these countries is therefore essential for food security and economic development, as well as safeguarding sensitive marine habitats and global biodiversity. Indonesia, South Africa and Mexico were chosen as potential countries of focus due to the economic importance of fishing, urgency to protect marine environments and the presence of supportive partner organizations.
“This generous funding will help MSC and our partners to make a real difference. We are extremely grateful to the Dutch Postcode Lottery and all of the postcode lottery ticket buyers who have made this possible,” said Rupert Howes, Chief Executive of the MSC.
“The MSC has the tools, training and networks to assist small scale and developing world fisheries on their journey of environmental improvement.”
Providing a credible benchmark for improvement
The MSC has committed to increasing access to MSC certification via the development of a transition program. Working with local partners and assessment bodies, the ‘Fish for Good’ project will provide engaged fisheries with long-term improvement plans and knowledge which could help them to become more sustainable and achieve certification in the future. The project builds upon the success of similar MSC pre-assessment projects with partners in France, Japan, Spain and the UK.
The MSC and Dutch Postcode Lottery
Since 2011, the MSC has received €500,000 per year funding from the Dutch Postcode Lottery. The contribution supports MSC in recognizing and rewarding sustainable fisheries. More than 310 fisheries in 33 countries, accounting for 10% global wild seafood harvest, are currently MSC certified.
Funding for the ‘Fish for Good’ project was awarded during a charity gala, held on Monday 6 February at the Koninklijk Theater Carré in Amsterdam.