Following the successful completion of an independent audit by certification body Acoura, Peterhead has become the first port to receive RFPS certification since the scheme was launched in July 2018.
The voluntary certified programme has been designed to demonstrate responsible food safety and good operational practices within UK fishing ports and harbours. It was developed in consultation with the UK seafood industry to raise standards across the fishing ports sector. It provides assurance to buyers and sellers of seafood that certified fishing ports are acting in a responsible manner with the seafood landed or sold through the market.
John Forman, Harbour Master at Peterhead Port, who was presented with the certificate by Jimmy Buchan, chair of the Scottish Seafood Association and Seafish board member, said: “We have worked extremely hard in recent years at Peterhead to improve our infrastructure and operations in order to add value to the seafood supply chain, so we are delighted to have become the first port in the UK to gain RFPS certification.
“The award is further proof that Peterhead is synonymous with delivering on the highest quality in seafood.”
Marcus Jacklin, RFPS Project Manager, said: “It’s absolutely fantastic to see Peterhead receive its Responsible Fishing Ports Scheme certification. We know that this award represents the culmination of a huge amount of work by the port and demonstrates their commitment to good operational practices.
“The RFPS was designed to complement other standards recognising best practice within the industry, with the rationale behind the scheme coming from an increasing need for assurances and transparency across the seafood supply chain and fishing ports. The certification of Peterhead port is an excellent first step in the rollout of the scheme and we would welcome any other ports now interested in applying for accreditation to get in touch.”
Les Oman, auditor at Lloyd’s Register said: “Peterhead Port Authority fish market is the first business to be certified to the new UK scheme, The Responsible Fishing Ports Scheme. This demonstrates responsible food safety and good operational practices within five core areas: Food Safety and Structural Integrity, Working Environment, Care for the Environment, Care of the Catch, and Seafood Traceability. The audit result reflects a real commitment to best practice and is a clear indication of the high standard achieved.”
RFPS is currently open for applications from large fishing ports with an auction or direct sale function. Development of another version of the scheme targeted at small ports is also underway.