Global Sustainable Seafood Initiative (GSSI)

Global Sustainable Seafood Initiative (GSSI)
The Global Sustainable Seafood Initiative (GSSI) has created a Global Benchmark Tool for the environmental aspects of seafood certification schemes.

This is across all sectors. GSSI is a global platform and partnership of seafood companies, NGOs, experts, governmental and intergovernmental organizations working towards more sustainable seafood through a collective, non-competitive approach to provide clarity on seafood certification and ensure consumer confidence in certified seafood. GSSI has created a Global Benchmark Tool for seafood certification schemes and a Supplementary Components document which shows a seafood certification scheme’s diverse approach and helps stakeholders understand where differences exist. This work allows seafood producers to better choose the scheme that works for their business, buyers to access simpler data to guide purchasing, and NGOs to use open information to promote sustainability. The GSSI benchmarks against environmental criteria.

In May 2018 the Consumer Goods Forum (CGF)’s Sustainable Supply Chain Initiative (SSCI) and the Global Sustainable Seafood Initiative (GSSI) announced their collaboration to provide a benchmark and recognition tool for social compliance schemes in the seafood sector. The CGF Social Sustainability Committee selected the seafood sector as one of the priority supply chains for their social sustainability workstream. Correspondingly, the GSSI Steering Board identified social compliance as a key priority area for the seafood sector. Similar to GSSI’s Global Benchmark Tool, the SSCI Benchmark will allow the industry to have access to a list of credible, robust auditing and certification programmes. In close collaboration, the two organisations will develop a social compliance benchmark that takes into account the specificities of the seafood sector and the special nature of work in food harvesting, and will be underpinned by ILO Conventions and Recommendations and UN Guiding Principles, and is aligned with the CGF’s Priority Industry Principles on Forced Labour. This cross-industry collaboration will bring together a broad representation of members of the aquaculture and wild harvest sectors, primary processors, retailers, manufacturers and relevant stakeholders to provide a unique opportunity for market alignment and harmonisation of efforts. Stakeholder engagement with the seafood sector will be crucial throughout the process.

Significance for seafood businesses: 

This is a scheme to benchmark the various standards that apply to the seafood sector to help stakeholders understand the differences between them. Sourcing seafood that is accredited to a standard provides reassurance that the seafood you are purchasing has been independently verified for environmental considerations.

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