Tuna Triumph! Independent ruling slams objections to PNA’s MSC re-certification

RELENTLESS tuna politics failed to deflate confidence within the Parties to the Nauru Agreement (PNA) camp following strong opposition from the International Pole and Line Foundation (IPNLF) to its recertification under the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) eco-label.

In what was generally seen by PNA as “commercially motivated,” the IPNLF objection delayed the recertification by months despite the green light given by a third party Conformity Assessment Body (CAB), which in this case was the international assessment consultancy firm Acoura.

Acoura was appointed in August last year to act as CAB to assess PNA for its purse seine yellowfin and skipjack tuna and by June, it had its Public Comment Draft Report out and its final report was published in early September. Its assessment was in favour of PNA’s recertificaytion.

By that month’s end, the IPNLF had officially launched its objection, stating its dissatisfactions with a number of issues including the way MSC’s assessment was carried out and that unsustainable fishing ypractices were being carried out alongside sustainable fishing in PNA waters.

Because of that, it argued, PNA should not be certified as a “sustainable fishery.”

“This is about market share of MSC fish in the shelves. The pole and line fishery cannot supply the volumes. IPNLF is John Burton, whose commercial interests were being eroded,” PNA’s former legal consultant Dr Transform Aqorau told Islands Business.

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