July 26, 2013—Albion Fisheries, Santa Monica Seafood, Seattle Fish Co. and other major seafood companies have formed Sea Pact, an industry coalition to advance environmentally sustainable fisheries and aquaculture practices.
The members say they’ll help build a long-term sustainable seafood industry by financially contributing to improve the fishing and fish farming systems from where they source their seafood.
Six US and Canadian companies currently make up Sea Pact. Other founding members are Fortune Fish & Gourmet, Ipswich Shellfish Group and Seacore Seafood. All members have committed to publicly state goals for a more sustainable seafood supply chain and monitor and measure progress towards the goals.
Sea Pact grew out of Santa Monica Seafood’s Responsible Sourcing/Vendor Partnership (RSVP), “a collaboration with FishWise http://www.sustainablefishery.org/ that applied a percentage of their purchases towards projects aimed at improving fisheries and aquaculture efforts at home and abroad.” The success of Santa Monica Seafood’s RSVP program attracted interest from other seafood wholesalers in the US and Canada who had instituted sustainability policies and who likewise saw the benefits that could be realized.
Logan Kock, vice president of strategic purchasing and responsible sourcing at Santa Monica Seafood says individual companies don’t have the financial means to make meaningful improvements in the industry. But through pooling their resources and combined buying power, Sea Pact members can sponsor sustainability projects that would otherwise be too large in scope.
With Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP) and FishWise acting as environmental consultants, the Sea Pact coalition is now accepting applications to identify and fund sustainable fisheries projects through the non-profit New Venture Fund.
--Amanda M. Westbrooks