ISSF Mission: Undertake science-based initiatives for the long-term sustainability of tuna stocks, reduction of by-catch, and promotion of ecosystem health, largely by supporting the conservation recommendations of tuna Regional Fisheries Management Organizations’ (RFMO) scientific committees. The strategy and focus of the ISSF addresses the major sustainability challenges facing the global tuna fishery through applied science, advocacy, and direct action.
Areas of Focus: The ISSF’s work with tuna falls under the following focal areas:
- Control and Reduce Fishing Capacity (to prevent overfishing)
- Eliminate Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated (IUU) Fishing
- Mitigate Bycatch
- Expand Data Support (for fishermen and scientists alike)
- Advance Performance in Monitoring, Control, and Surveillance (aboard fishing vessels)
- Improve Overall Tuna Stock Health
To learn more about the projects under each of these focal areas, click here.
To learn about any specific projects in detail, go to www.ISS-Foundation.org.
What ISSF Has Achieved:
- Full traceability of all of the tuna ISSF members (including Clover Leaf) sell, from ship to plate
- Partnership with the WWF, as well as involvement with a variety of independent environmental groups such as FishWise, MSC, and Conservation International through the Environmental Stakeholder Committee
- Banned sourcing from large-scale pelagic drift nets
- Banned shark finning
- Banned sourcing from IUU boats
- Regular “Taking Stock” reports ensure that the populations of tuna we fish from have management plans in place that are improving stock health – check out the most recent report here
- Limiting fishing capacity by having all ISSF members source purse seined tuna only from purse seine boats that existed prior to January 2013, unless a new boat is replacing a pre-existing one that is being retired
- Sourcing tuna only from boats on which skippers have received yearly training in best fishing practices, and that have unique identifying numbers to prevent IUU fishing
Check out our progress in 2012: Click to view video
ISSF’s Current Projects:
- The biggest focus is on bycatch reduction:
- Multiple projects in Marine Turtle Conservation
- Bycatch Research Initiative ($15 million commitment – and growing)
- At-sea research / technology development cruises
- Skipper workshops and education on best practices
- Developing non-entangling, biodegradable FAD designs that have been proven through our research to reduce bycatch
- Requiring third-party observers on purse seine fishing vessels from which ISSF companies source
- Trials of electronic monitoring on fishing vessels that would act as third-party observers
- Continuing to work with tuna RFMOs to improve their efficacy and strengthen their regulations
Click here to peruse the ISSF’s YouTube library containing everything you've ever wanted to know about tuna, from glossary definitions of common terms to our stance on FADs to the latest scientific research.