The WWF-SASSI Retailer/ Supplier Participation Scheme has made great strides in transforming the seafood sector in the past 10 years by encouraging sustainable procurement in response to consumer demand. The move towards a more sustainable seafood sector is due to a combination of increased consumer demand for more sustainable options, the foresight of WWF to work with seafood retailers and suppliers along the supply chain and the retailers and suppliers themselves who have put in the hard work.
The nine WWF-SASSI participants are I&J, John Dory’s, Pick n Pay, Food Lover’s Market, Woolworths, SPAR Group Limited, Ocean Basket, Sun International and Breco Seafoods. An example in the South African context is the action taken by the nine national retailers and suppliers who sent a joint letter to the Namibian Hake Association (NHA) to request improvements in environmental performance of their fishery.
Following this engagement, the NHA committed to have their fishery assessed against the Marine Stewardship Council standard for sustainable fisheries, with the process due to begin in early 2017.
Together, WWF-SASSI participants hold the power to transform the seafood sector by supporting fisheries under improvement, stocking sustainable seafood species that comply with traceability principles, and ensuring that seafood products are adequately labelled with enough information so that consumers can make informed purchasing decisions.