“Where’s the fish?”

This is what dishes could look like in the coming decades if our generation doesn’t act now to protect our ocean’s resources.

“The world’s use of sea resources is high a third of the ocean is being overfished, around 60% of fish stocks are fully fished.”

South Korea ranked number one in the world for average seafood consumption in a study conducted between 2013 and 2015.
And it’s seafood consumption continues to rise so domestic seafood market players need to take steps to protect sea resources.
One way of doing this is by putting Marine Stewardship Council certified products on the shelves.

“This certification label on seafood products shows consumers that the fishery meets international best practice for sustainable fishing. While the label itself is small, it can make a big difference to the health of our oceans’ resources.”

The labels show that seafood has been sustainably fished and that the supplier also only buys from sustainable sources.
The majority of Korean consumers have yet to choose sustainability over taste, but one Korean fishing company has taken the bold step by getting itself certified.

“Originally I thought the demand has to come from the market, from the customers in order for producers to change the way operate, and way they fish, and way they process their seafood; however, now we’re learning that if we change as an influential seafood company through the cascade effect, we can change the whole industry and ultimately the market and consumer behavior as well.”

Distributors agree even with the certified products being 10 to 15 percent more expensive.

“We’re responsible for future food sources, so we see it as an investment and continue to request our suppliers to do the same and we even guarantee a certain amount of sales in negotiations.”

Globally the movement has also picked up speed.

“In Europe, MSC is nothing special but a requirement. In big supermarket chains in England and Netherlands, it’s harder to find products without the MSC label.”

A common misconception is that people believe the ocean belongs to the fishing companies.
But actually, the ocean belongs to everyone, and this may be just one step towards protecting it.
Kim Do-yeon, Arirang News.

Reporter : tkim@arirang.com

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