The Indian Ocean Albacore Tuna Longline FIP aims to improve fishing practices for longline vessels operating in the Indian Ocean that land albacore and supply Bumble Bee Foods. Bumble Bee sources albacore tuna from these vessels through the Taiwanese-founded company FCF Fishery Company, Ltd. (FCF), who acts as a broker for the fishing vessels, with Bumble Bee exporting the product to North American markets. While the target stock is healthy and management is well-document and well-implemented, the fishery lacks explicit harvest control rules and harvest strategies, which are fundamental tools to limit the risk of overfishing. Additionally, the fishery lacks independent observers, electronic monitoring, and qualitative information about bycatch, making the fishery’s effects on the surrounding ecosystem difficult to assess. This FIP is one of two projects between Bumble Bee, FCF and O2 focused on ensuring sustainable Chinese and Chinese Taipei longline fisheries; the other is for longline vessels in the Pacific Ocean. The goal of both FIPs is to achieve a certifiable status by mid-2024.
What We're Doing:
- Convening fishery stakeholders to generate support, participation, and funding, including matching funds and in-kind contributions, for improvement efforts.
- Reviewing and updating a 2018 pre-assessment of the fishery to identify priority environmental challenges, including a lack of information about fishery interactions with endangered, threatened, or protected (ETP) species.
- Developing and implementing a FIP workplan to address the concerns found during the pre-assessment and pre-assessment update.
- Expanding coverage electronically to participating FIP vessels which will support effective fisheries management practices through better data collection, to be used to monitor fisheries, assess fish populations, and inform science-based management for target, bycatch and threatened species at the regional level.
Project News and Additional Resources:
- MSC Pre-Assessment Report for Bumble Bee and FCF Mauritius, Madagascar and High Seas Albacore Longline Fishery
- Scoping Document and Initial Workplan: Indian Ocean Albacore Tuna Longline Fishery Improvement Project
- New Fishery Improvement Project Launched to Address Sustainability Gap in Indian Ocean Tuna Fisheries
- Bumble Bee Foods and FCF Partner with Ocean Outcomes to Improve Longline Tuna Fisheries
Fishery Improvement Project Information:
|FIP Status:||Comprehensive FIP (tracked fully on FisheryProgress.org)|
|Project Launch:||January 2019|
|Participants:||Ocean Outcomes, Bumble Bee Foods, LLC, FCF Fishery Company, Ltd.|
|Species:||Albacore tuna (Thunnus alalunga)|
|Volume:||6,000 metric tons|
|Documents:||Pre-assessment / Scoping Document / Workplan|