Friend of the Sea project further expands to South America, as mussels (Mytilus chilensis) from market leader Toralla acheive sustainability certification. The scheme is also rapidly establishing as reference sustainability standard for shellfish, having assessed and certified not only mussels but also clams and cockles in Europe, America and Oceania.
Toralla, S.A. (www.toralla.cl) was established in 2000 by the Leiro family. Toralla’s main offices are in Chonchi, on the isle of Chiloé, Chile. Toralla manages (through its subsidiary, Cultivos Toralla) over 250 hectares of sea, exploited using the “long-line” farming system to harvests 12 thousand tonnes of mussel per year, sold in several countries around the world (Spain, Italy, Greece, England, France, Belgium, USA, etc.)
All farming sites have had to undergo Environmental Impact Assessments and the Chilean sanitary authority (Sernapesca) regularly monitors the state of the waters. Toralla periodically cleans up the seabed under the lines from mussels which might have dropped from the lines. Lines and floaters and all the related structures undergo periodical maintenance. The large volume of solid waste (basically shells) generated during the production process, is appropriately treated at the Lime Plant. Here the shells are converted, following a complex calcinations process, into a new end product: whiting, which is commercialized on the market as natural fertilizer for the land. The products are shipped all over the world by sea and not air transport.
Toralla follows a strict energy reduction plan and also switched from oil to liquid gas in 2009 as main electric energy source for processing. The company is also involved in socially and environmentally useful initiatives, such as sponsoring the cleaning up of beaches, supporting local schools and promoting sports and a healthy lifestyle.
Strict compliance with the regulations on critical point control and quality assurance – HACCP and PAC – have led to product approval for supplying the most demanding markets in the world (BRC and ISO standards within the next months, EU and FDA regulations in the U.S.A., among others).
“Friend of the Sea certification is becoming the international standard for seafood sustainability and provides a clear and positive message to consumers” comments Mr Sergio Leiro O. – General Manager of Toralla – “we also appreciate Friend of the Sea support of mussels production as being the most environmentally friendly way to produce proteins from seafood”.
Following the audit run by an accredited international certification body, Toralla has had to integrate some procedures in its quality manual. Corrective actions were rapidly implemented and Toralla can now display the Friend of the Sea seal of approval on its products sold around the globe.
For more information:
Claudio Napadensky Tormo
Friend of the Sea