Croatian purse seined anchovies are first worldwide to obtain Friend of the Sea sustainability certification

Retailers’ private labels and producers’ products in Europe will carry the international seal of approval

Some main retail chains in Europe and anchovies producers have requested Friend of the Sea certification of their anchovies sources. While the Bay of Biscay fishery would not comply with Friend of the Sea criteria, as it is currently considered overexploited, other Mediterranean origins would. Among these, the Croatian fishery has been audited by an independent third party certification body and found to be compliant with Friend of the Sea sustainability standards.

“Mediterranean anchovies stocks are considered to be not overexploited. The traditional small purse seining fishing method (called ‘lampara’) does not impact the seabed and it is very selective.” comments Dr Paolo Bray, director of Friend of the Sea “FAO states in its 2005 Update on Discards that ‘The fisheries for small pelagics generally have low discard rates because the schools tend to be monospecific and the fish tend to be of a similar size. Many small pelagic purse-seine fisheries are considered to have a zero discard rate.’”

Friend of the Sea calls for small pelagics processors around the globe, including those producing fishmeal, to become aware of the relatively lower impact of their fisheries and to certify it by means of the Friend of the Sea assessment. Sustainable anchovies from Croatia carrying the Friend of the Sea label can already be spotted on some retailers’ shelves in Europe