16 October 2020. AENOR launches the website www.atundepescaresponsableaenor.com to shine a light on the work of the tuna fleet and its effort in bringing products to the consumer using best fishing practices, guaranteeing the rights and working conditions of fishing workers, avoiding overfishing and accidental catches and ensuring the future of tuna stocks.
One of the goals of the website is to provide valuable information and content so that the public can purchase canned tuna responsibly, on a date such as today when we are celebrating World Food Day. This year, it is dedicated to the #FoodHeroes who, under the slogan "Cultivate, nurture, preserve. Together", plant, grow, fish or transport food.
This new website contains information for consumers and for companies interested in certifying their entire chain of custody and being able to use the AENOR APR seal. For consumers, there are dedicated sections on the website for recognising those products that have been certified with the AENOR APR seal, the implications of consuming these products, as well as companies, such as Isabel and Campos, that have already been awarded this certification. Furthermore, there is information on the certification of ships and canning companies, as well as the most important international regulations in this field. In addition, the annual APR fleet certification reports are included, with all details of the certification process and their results.
The certificate, based on the UNE 195006 Standard promoted by the Organisation of Associated Producers of Frozen Tuna (OPAGAC), represents the only globally recognised standard that guarantees the fleet's social and labour rights in accordance with international standards and agreements, while ensuring compliance with the best fishing practices and globally recognised standards.
For the CEO of AENOR, Rafael García Meiro, "this website and the APR certificate represent the evolution of AENOR and its desire to help companies convey a message of added value in their products that is consistent with their commitments. The certified companies place Spain's fishing industry at the top of the ranking with practices that improve people's lives, look after their safety, and that ensure responsible fishing and the preservation of a resource as valuable as the sea".
For Óscar Vicente, CEO of Bolton Food S.L. (Conservas ISABEL), "as industry leaders, it is our responsibility to lead the tuna industry by example when it comes to sustainability. We mustn't forget that 1 out 6 fish dishes consumed in Europe come from illegal sources. APR offers us a way to further develop our commitment to 360º sustainability". He also added that "ISABEL is the first brand to market 100% of its tuna under this seal, and we are proud to have endorsed this world-first pioneering certification from the start, a certification that ensures compliance with social and labour rights at sea and guarantees responsible fishing. This seal lets us know that we are also helping to preserve marine resources, improve the lives of those who work at sea, and offer responsible purchasing options to increasingly demanding consumers who are aware of and concerned about the origin of the products they consume. Our commitment must be firm".
Aintzi Labru, Marketing Director of Conservas Campos, noted that the new website "stands out for its contents, which clearly highlight the significance of the APR certification, which reaches everyone involved in the tuna value chain, from fishermen to buyers to consumers". And she added that "the APR certification of our products isn't just another seal, because it not only helps to maintain the marine ecosystem, but it also protects the rights of sailors, upholding their social, labour and economic conditions, without exploitation or slavery. Furthermore, the certification guarantees that the catches made by vessels certified by this standard comply with strict traceability and monitoring controls, which is something that our consumers value. Right now, it is consumers themselves who can help preserve both the marine environment of tuna and the working conditions of workers, and this website is a very important step in this direction".
Finally, Julio Morón, CEO of OPAGAC, noted that "three years ago, the OPAGAC/AGAC tuna fleet spearheaded the creation of the UNE 196005 Standard and the AENOR APR certification. Since 2017, all the vessels in our organisation have been APR certified by AENOR. There are 47 certified vessels that catch around 400,000 t, which accounts for 8% of the world's tropical tuna catch. The APR seal validates our commitment to Responsible Fishing and to Good Working Conditions for our sailors, and makes us a global leader in socially sustainable fishing".
The AENOR APR seal addresses the growing demand to guarantee responsible tuna fishing by covering all the factors involved in the preservation of natural and human resources. The companies that obtain it are publicly demonstrating their firm, long-term commitment to environmentally responsible, sustainable extractive fishing methods, maritime control and sanitation of fishing vessels and guarantee of fishing workers rights (minimum age, salary, contracts, insurance, etc.), in line with current social values.
This certification means that Spanish consumers will be the first in the world to be able to purchase canned tuna whose certificate, namely the AENOR APR seal, guarantees that best environmental practices have been observed. This seal certifies compliance with the working conditions on board vessels stipulated in the International Labour Organization's "Work in Fishing Convention (C188)". Moreover, thanks to its Chain of Custody Regulation, distributors and consumers are guaranteed that the tuna they market and consume from certified companies and vessels is backed by the strictest social, work and safety standards at sea, above and beyond current legal requirements.