Guyana seabob FIP

In the coming months the Guyana seabob fishery will be entered into assessment to the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) international environmental standard for well-managed fisheries – the internationally recognised “gold standard” for sustainable seafood.  This is an important milestone in the industry's journey towards matching international best practice in fisheries – and comes a little over a year since the neighbouring Suriname seabob fishery achieved re-certification to this standard.

A Fishery Improvement Project (FIP) for this fishery has been in operation since 2012, and the client group has been taking forward a work programme to bring the evidence-base, management and industry practices into alignment with the MSC standard.  We are now in the last stages of this work programme.

Nautilus has been advising the client through this process, and just ahead of Christmas Crick visited Guyana to meet with the industry group taking this assessment forward – the Guyana Association of Trawlers Owners and Seafood Processors (GATOSP) – and with a visiting group of its main US seabob buyers, to recap on progress and clarify what work still needs to be done.

Details of the FIP and its progress can be viewed on the the Fishery Progress websitehere.

The Atlantic seabob shrimp is by far and away Guyana’s pre-eminent seafood export, with exports to the US and European Union valued in excess of USD40M per year. The seabob sector employs around 700 fishermen, 500 shoreside support staff, and another 1,700 processing workers.  And to maintain and increase the value and economic contribution of this sector it is now imperative that the seabob industry shows it is achieving good stewardship. To this end, GATOSP members have been diligently working in partnership with the Fisheries Department, the World Wildlife Fund and local and international marine researchers to strengthen the sustainable management of its seabob fisheries.