NETUNO, others exit 2020 Seafood Expo in Boston amid coronavirus concerns

By Amanda Longoria, NETUNO USA

President Luciano Bonaldo’s formal statement: “After careful deliberation and monitoring of the situation, we’ve decided not to attend the Seafood Expo in Boston this year. We would like to avoid putting our team at unnecessary risk of exposure and hope that our partners, customers, and vendors understand our position.”

NETUNO invested heavily in marketing this year to help support their new line of value-added shrimp, Sauté ‘n Serve. The product launched last year for foodservice and a retail launch is expected later this year.

They planned to use their platform in Boston to allow customers to preview the retail packaging of their products and entered the “New Product Showcase” competition. As finalists for best product for foodservice, they were expected to present their Thai Coconut Curry to judges at the show.

“We are disappointed that we will not be there to show what a great product Sauté ‘n Serve is, for both foodservice and retail. We are actively looking for other ways to demonstrate this product to potential customers and hope to be able to showcase it at other food shows later this year,” says Sales & Marketing Director, Amanda Longoria.

Other companies have also made the decision to exit the show, as reported by SeafoodSource and Undercurrent News. Since the start of the outbreak, coronavirus has affected markets, travel, and business as usual.

12 finalists to compete for 2020 Seafood Excellence Awards

By Madelyn Kearns, SeafoodSource

Twelve finalists will go head-to-head for the 2020 Seafood Excellence Awards on Sunday, 15 March, at Seafood Expo North America/Seafood Processing North America in Boston, Massachusetts, according to event organizer Diversified Communications.

Seventy entries were submitted for this year’s Seafood Excellence Awards, a prestigious competition recognizing the best new seafood products available in the North American market. The remaining 12 finalists will compete before a three-person panel of expert judges in two categories: Best New Foodservice Product and Best New Retail Product.

The judges, who will convene to assess the products on 15 March from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., will evaluate the twelve entries based on their uniqueness and appropriateness to the market, taste profile, packaging, market potential, convenience, nutritional value, and originality, Diversified said in a press release. The winners will be announced at 3 p.m. in the Demonstration Theater at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center, where the expo is taking place.

The finalists are as follows:

  • Acme Smoked Fish Corp. – Acme Smoked Salmon Convenience Pack
  • Azuma Foods International Inc., U.S.A. – Island Style Marinated Ogo Seaweed
  • Bristol Seafood – My Fish Dish Blackened & Smoked Butter Scallops
  • East Coast Seafood – Scallops, Wild Mushrooms & Gnocchi
  • GlobeXplore – Sea Vegetables & Chipotle Spread
  • Handy Seafood Inc. – Thai Chili Shrimp Rolls
  • Ideal Fish – Hot Smoked Domestic RAS Branzino
  • King & Prince Seafood Corp. – Lobster Salad Sensations
  • MeFoodGuy LLC – Gluten Free/Dairy Free Seafood Chowder
  • Netuno USA Inc. – Sauté ‘n Serve Thai Coconut Curry
  • Ocean Beauty Seafoods LLC – Echo Falls Smoked Wild Alaskan Sockeye Salmon Tapas Slices
  • Trident Seafoods – Trident Seafoods Loaded Baked Potato Crusted Wild Alaska Pollock Fillets

All finalists’ products will be on display during the three-day exposition in the New Product Showcase.

The Seafood Excellence Awards serve as the North American extension of the Seafood Excellence Global Awards competition, held at Seafood Expo Global in Brussels, Belgium. Both Seafood Excellence Awards and Seafood Excellence Global Awards are organized by Diversified Communications, producers of Seafood Expo North America/Seafood Processing North America, Seafood Expo Global/Seafood Processing Global and Seafood Expo Asia. SeafoodSource, produced by Diversified Communications, is the official media for Seafood Expo North America/Seafood Processing North America.

Original post from »

New fishery improvement projects in Indonesia cover tuna, snapper, and grouper

By Aaron Orlowski, SeafoodSource

Two new fishery improvement projects (FIPs) in Indonesia seek to make significant portions of the country’s valuable tuna and groundfish fisheries, including snapper and grouper, more sustainable. 

The national, industry-led longline tuna FIP was recently announced by Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP), which has been working on the project for almost a year. A memorandum of understanding was signed with Indonesia’s Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries earlier this month.

Though multiple FIPs for tuna in Indonesia currently exist for other gear types and fisheries, this one is broader in scope, covering the entire country, and is led entirely by the Indonesia Longline Tuna Association, according to Amber Von Harten, who is the Indonesia supply chain roundtable leader at SFP.

The work plan for the FIP is currently being developed and will address the principles required for Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certification for five tuna fisheries: Indian Ocean bigeye, yellowfin, and albacore, as well as Pacific Ocean yellowfin and bigeye. 

“They’re going to be looking at harvest strategies for the different species, and looking at interactions with bycatch, and also looking at issues surrounding the health of the stocks,” Von Harten told SeafoodSource. In addition, “there’s a whole governance and policy piece to this in working with the Indonesia government.” 

In Indonesia, there are roughly 300 longline vessels over 30 gross tons. The National Longline Tuna Association covers 233 of those vessels, VonHarten said.  

“This could be a historical milestone for the longline tuna fishery improvement project towards MSC certification,” Dwi Agus Siswa Putra, chairman of the association, said in a statement. “We hope that longline tuna will regain its position as a prominent product from Indonesia that makes all of us proud.”

The tuna FIP will help SFP achieve its goal of having 75 percent of global production of key seafood sectors either sustainable or improving by the end of 2020 – either MSC-certified or making verifiable improvements as part of a FIP or similar program. 

The tuna FIP will be especially helpful for SFP, since national projects are more efficient, covering a greater volume of fish for a similar amount of effort compared to a smaller project. 

The second new FIP in Indonesia, for the groundfish fishery, will help reduce the overharvesting of the juvenile fish that are necessary to keep the fishery producing at maximum sustainable yield. 

Around the world, plate-sized snapper and grouper are popular among restaurateurs and diners, but those smaller fish also tend to be juveniles. Overharvesting the young fish is causing a sustainability problem that the new FIP seeks to address. 

Historically, the Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries hasn’t applied a harvest strategy to the fishery. Under the new FIP, companies will share data about catch origin and fish size with the Indonesia government, enabling it to make more informed management decisions.

The FIP, launched in July, covers an array of species: including: various snappers, jobfish, groupers, and emperors. The FIP outlines a plan to improve the fishery. 

“This program is now being held accountable to certain steps that are outlined in this plan,” Peter Mous, the director of The Nature Conservancy’s Indonesia fisheries program, told SeafoodSource. “We are scoring well in terms of monitoring and stock assessment. The critical gap is development of a management plan together with the government.” 

The Nature Conservancy has been working on Indonesia’s groundfish fishery since 2014, though the FIP was officially launched only this year. So far, 10 companies have signed on to the FIP: Norpac Fisheries Export, Anova Food, Bali Sustainable Seafood, LP Foods, Netuno USA, Bahari Biru Nusantara, Graha Insan Sejahtera, Kharisma Bintang Terang, Solusi Laut Lestari, and Sukses Hasil Alam Nusaindo (Shanindo). 

“The companies that signed up for this FIP explicitly made a commitment to sustainability by committing to avoid sourcing juveniles,” Mous said. Good fishery science and policy holds that fish shouldn’t be harvested until they’ve reproduced at least once, Mous added. “That means you want to avoid catching very small ones. (But) small ones were making up a considerable part of the sourcing program.”

The companies themselves have incentive to make the fishery more sustainable.

“Fish caught before they have the ability to spawn cannot contribute to the natural growth of the population,” Norpac founder Thomas Kraft said in a statement. “[But] too often, only fishers are asked to make sacrifices by adopting sustainable fishing practices, which increases their workload and negatively impacts their livelihoods. It is important that the industry as a whole commit to responsible fishing and mitigate the burden on fishers.”

Photo courtesy of Ed Wray/The Nature Conservancy

Original post from »

Octopus FIP launches off coast of Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula

By Undercurrent News

octopus, Yucatan

From left to right: Manuel Sanchez, Builders Coalition; Andre Brugger, Netuno; Luis Burillion, MSC; Mauricio Orellana, Artisan Catch; Javier Van Kleiveren, Smart Fish; Mr. Ong Chee Tiong, LP Foods

The Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP) on Thursday announced the beginning of a new industry led fishery improvement project (FIP) for octopus caught off the coast of Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula using drift rods and lines.

The FIP is supported by Netuno USA, Empacadora Promarmex, Orca Seafoods, LP Foods, Comercializadora Healthy Fish and MASPESCA, many of which were represented at the Seafood Expo North America, in Boston, Massachusetts, in March, at a ceremony to sign a memorandum of understanding. The companies pledged then to get the fishery ready for certification by the Marine Stewardship Council within a couple of years.

SFP said the fishery has four goals…

Continue reading on »

TNC Indonesia Collaborates with 12 Companies to Save the Indonesian Snapper and Grouper Fishing Industry

By Hariyanto, – Jakarta – The Nature Conservancy (TNC) of Indonesia launched the Comprehensive FIP (Fisheries Improvement Project) for the Indonesian snapper and grouper fishing industry along with twelve fishing companies representing fishermen, local distributors and exporters.
This collaboration with the private sector is carried out to overcome problems in fisheries management in Indonesia. 

In an effort to save the business of US $ 1 million in Indonesian sea-snapper and grouper fisheries, a coalition of domestic and international companies has joined The Nature Conservancy to maintain an industry with more than 100,000 workers and support millions of people throughout world. 

Companies that have approved the Fish Improvement Program (FIP) are Anova Food, LLC; PT. Bahari Biru Nusantara; CV. Bali Sustainable Seafood; Beaver Street Fisheries, Inc. ; PT. Graha Insan Sejahtera; PT. Bright Star Charisma; PT. Manage the Archipelago Sea; LP Foods Pte Ltd. ; Netuno USA Inc .; Norpac Fisheries Export LLC; PT. Solusi Laut Lestari and PT. Nusaindo Natural Results Success.

“Traditional fishermen are the backbone of fisheries. About 70 percent of Indonesian fishermen depend on these livelihoods to support their families, “said TNC’s Fisheries Program Director Dr. Peter Mous in Jakarta, Wednesday (08/14/2019).

“Working closely with the seafood logistics network and the industries involved, we can develop strong management and maintain a sustainable industry for fishermen who rely on the fishing industry,” he said.

FIP is collaborating with twelve companies representing fishermen, local distributors, and exporters from the private sector to overcome problems in fisheries management in Indonesia. 

In this launch, the partners discussed their commitment to not only avoid buying fish that were not yet mature, but also to discuss a long-term plan to monitor catches and establish a credible compliance system. This is needed to meet the requirements of sustainable fisheries standards, such as the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certification.

“The American government is proud to support a comprehensive effort to strengthen sustainable fisheries management in Indonesia,” said Environment Office Director of the US Agency for International Development (USAID) Matthew Burton. 

Through the Supporting Nature and People-Partnership for Enduring Resources (SNAPPER) program, continued Burton, his party supports the Indonesian government in developing sustainable fishing strategies and helping the private sector obtain MSC certificates for snapper and deep sea grouper fisheries. 

“These steps can stabilize the fishing industry in the long run, provide opportunities for consumers globally to obtain sustainable seafood from Indonesia and maintain livelihoods for the people of Indonesia,” he said.

“The development of this partnership is an important step towards achieving sustainable fisheries in Indonesia and we hope that more companies will join this program to ensure the future of the snapper and grouper fishing industry,” added TNC Executive Director Rizal Algamar.

At present, there are around 80 FIP projects around the world, from tuna in the Indian Sea to lobsters off the coast of Nicaragua in the Caribbean. FIP is assessed periodically based on the progress of achievements, from Very Developing / Advanced (A) to Invisible / Inegligible (E). 

The latest FIP ​​initiative guided by TNC in collaboration with partners is part of projects funded by various institutions such as USAID / Indonesia, the Walton Family Foundation, and the Packard Foundation to create a sustainable fishing industry. 

This project is carried out under a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries of the Republic of Indonesia. The program also works with various national and provincial level institutions to design management plans and capture strategies.

Original story on »

Why Restaurant Demand For Smaller Fish Fillets Is Bad News For Oceans

By Alastair Bland, NPR

Bigger isn’t necessarily better when it comes to catching, selling and eating fish.

For certain snappers, in fact, a market preference for plate-size whole fillets is driving fishermen to target smaller fish. For some wild fish populations, this is a recipe for collapse.

“The preferred size of a fillet in the U.S. market corresponds to juvenile fish that haven’t had a chance to reproduce,” says conservation biologist Peter Mous, director of the Nature Conservancy’s Indonesia Fisheries Conservation Program. “A lot of species here are heavily overfished, and this demand for small fillets is making things worse.”

Of particular concern for conservationists are such species as Malabar snapper. Mous says this fish becomes sexually mature at four pounds and can grow as large as 29 pounds — but global restaurant and retail markets prefer to buy it at two pounds and as small as one pound.

“For a large species like giant ruby snapper, the differences are even more extreme,” Mous wrote in an email. “The trade buys them at 1 lb., but they only become adults at 9 lbs., while [they] can grow to 73 lbs.”

The Indonesian snapper fishery, which Mous has been studying since the late 1990s, focuses on numerous species in several genera. The reproductive patterns and growth rates of these fish vary widely, but with virtually all species, the market prefers what are essentially baby fish. He says many snapper species have already been depleted…

Continue reading on »