Danish MSC fisheries

In recent years there has been an increasing demand from the market to fisheries throughout the world for them to be able to demonstrate that they are sustainable and that they protect the environment. The Danish fisheries are working to meet these requirements by having the fisheries certified under the rules of the internationally recognised organisation
for proven sustainability, the MSC.

MSC – Marine Stewardship Council
MSC was created in 1997 by WWF – World Wildlife Fund and the food giant Unilever. However, since 1999 it has been an independent organisation with a board consisting of people from the fishing industry, environmental NGO’s and research institutions worldwide. The first years relatively few fish products were sold carrying MSC’s blue label, but since 2006 the
interest has increased explosively, both among the world’s fisheries and among the supermarkets, fish retailers, etc. that sell fish to consumers – particularly in Europe.

MSC’s requirements for certified fisheries can be grouped into three basic principles:

  • The fish stock and the level of fishing must be sustainable.
  • Damage to the ecosystem and marine environment must be minimised.
  • The fishery must be managed effectively so that sustainability and ecosystem are safeguarded.

The Danish fisheries
The Danish fisheries have for many years been working to ensure that they can be sustainable, also in the future. The number of vessels has been adapted to the quantities of fish that is available. Flexible quota schemes have been introduced in order to avoid discard and together with researchers new gears have been developed allowing us to fish more selectively and carefully.

Thus the Danish Fishermen’s Association and the Danish Fishermen’s Producers’ Organisation have decided to document this effort and further improve our work by seeking MSC certification for our fisheries – the aim is quite simply that:
All those Danish commercial fisheries where it is within our power to meet the requirements of the MSC standard shall be certified.