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PNA: “WWF Supports MSC Process” Pacific Islands Nations, December 5, 12

The WWF fully supports the PNA’s MSC certification process, despite the fact the environment group appeared to be against it in a recent news article, says Transform Aqorau, Parties to the Nauru Agreement (PNA) director.
Aqorau says he received an email last week from Bill Fox, vice president of fisheries at the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) – US, that clears up any confusion about the group’s position.
“He sent me an email and basically reasserted the WWF’s commitment to our MSC certification process,” says Aqorau. “He strongly supports our sustainable endeavors and is hoping, as we are, that we get our chain of custody as soon as possible.”
In the IntraFish article published on Nov. 14, “Skipjack fishermen plan to hold off until 2014 to switch to MSC,” the reporter wrote Fox “fears it may be a losing battle” to get the fishermen operating in PNA waters to adopt sustainable and Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) approved practices.
The PNA’s free school purse seine skipjack fishery became MSC certified about a year ago and it is still seeking its chain of custody (COC) certification, which is necessary to deliver the sustainable tuna to the market.
Pacifical – the co-brand of the PNA’s MSC tuna – attributes the delay to the boat owners in the region who continue to catch unsustainably with fish-aggregating devices (FADs).
Aqorau says the WWF is working with top US retailers such as Walmart, Kroger, Costco and SuperValu to emphasize the importance and growing demand for MSC certified tuna.
“The WWF is committed to helping our tuna reach the market. They’re asking their company partners to buy tuna with the MSC logo for their customers,” says Aqorau.