November 2012 – Norwegian Seafood Council fleets fishing in the Barents Sea positively concluded Friend of the Sea audit for cold water prawns (Pandalus borealis). Derived products can now proudly display the international sustainability seal of approval.
All of the three Northern prawn stocks in the North Sea and Skagerrak are fished well within Maximum Sustainable Yield. The Norwegian fisheries management regime is aiming at maximizing the long term sustainable yield of the living marine resources and at the same time protecting biodiversity and the functioning of ecosystems.
Over 60 closures, amendments and re-openings are undertaken annually in a successful effort to protect juveniles. The measures have a precautionary scope. There are fishing quota established for each of the three Scandinavian countries operating in this fishing area and for each fishery.
Fishing does not interfere with Marine Protected Areas. Restrictions are applied in order to preserve the seabed (no trawling is allowed in waters shallower than 60m). Furthermore the used trawls do not dig into the bottom of the seabed as the caught species live on or above muddy seabed.
Fishing methods and gears where found to be compliant with all Friend of the Sea. A sorting grid of 19 mm reduces discards below 8%, with almost no bycatch.
Accurate data on all catches is collected ‘live’ through a new electronic reporting system which allows the authorities, to decide ‘real time’ specific measures to protect the stocks and the ecosystem.
“Norwegian Seafood Council is by far the best example of sustainable prawn fishery management worldwide” comments Paolo Bray, Director of Friend of the Sea “
“Norway has for years been acknowledged as one of the world’s leading within sustainable seafood management. We are now pleased that Friend of the Sea have certified Norwegian Prawns as sustainable harvested, and see it as an important tool in many of our main markets”, says Ove Johansen, branch director prawns and shellfish, Norwegian Seafood Council.
Friend of the Sea
Friend of the Sea is an international non-profit certification scheme for products from sustainable fisheries and aquaculture. Certified products are fished from not overexploited nor IUCN Redlisted stocks and with selective methods which do not impact the seabed. Those originate from aquaculture are reared with respect of critical habitat, with no use of antifoulants, GMOS and growth hormones.
Norwegian Seafood Council
NSC is a public company owned by the Ministry of Fisheries and Coastal Affairs. The General Assembly is formed by the Minister for Fisheries and Coastal Affairs, who appoints the Board of Directors for a period of two years at a time. NSC is financed by the Norwegian Seafood industry through fees levied on all exports of Norwegian Seafood.