Skretting sustainability report 2020

Our migration towards a more sustainable future

Advocating for a responsible blue whiting fishery

Blue whiting is one of the most abundant fish stocks in the semi-pelagic water masses of the Northeast Atlantic. It is very important as raw material for fishmeal and fish oil production in Europe. Nearly half of fishmeal production in north-western Europe originates from blue whiting.

In previous years, the blue whiting fishery has held a Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certificate and been approved by the MarinTrust programme. In 2020, there was a continuing dispute over quota allocation of blue whiting resulting in annual catches well in excess of the science-based advice. As a result of the dispute and the catch exceeding recommended limits, the MSC certification of the blue whiting fisheries in the North Atlantic was suspended on 30 December 2020.

This fishery is relevant for Skretting Norway operations. As part of its procurement policy, Skretting Norway requires that the fishmeal and fish oil originating from whole fish must originate from MarinTrust approved fisheries. For Skretting and our customers, the loss of certification due to this dispute means a significant reduction in access to already scarce marine resources.

Commitments to sustainable fishing have been made by all coastal states involved in Northeast Atlantic fisheries through the adoption of the UN SDGs, in particular SDG 14: Life below water. Skretting has SDG related targets through responsible sourcing criteria of marine ingredients, and certification offers a credible and impartial tool to demonstrate that we meet the ambitions to contribute to a healthy planet for future generations. Loss of certification would reduce progress against SDG 14.

Together, we can find a sustainable approach to managing key fisheries in European waters. But we must act now.

In 2020, Skretting sought support from fellow concerned stakeholders to work to maintain responsible management of the blue whiting fishery. Consequently, Skretting became a founding member of the North Atlantic Pelagic Advocacy Group (NAPA), a market-led approach to improve North Atlantic pelagic fisheries management. Partners include retailers, foodservice companies and suppliers who are working together with the aim to secure an agreement on total allowable catches for these fisheries in line with scientific advice for a long-term science-based management agreement. 

In October 2020, Skretting formally contacted the delegations of the coastal states regarding negotiations for determining fishery quotas of shared stocks in the Northeast Atlantic. Skretting called for agreement and stressed that together we can find a sustainable approach to managing key fisheries in European waters. But we must act now.

In 2021, Skretting will continue our cooperation with NAPA in working towards regaining responsible fishery management certification of the blue whiting fishery.

Blue whiting graphic

In this section

The carbon footprint of feed
Improving our own operations
Skretting Italy initiates carbon neutral opportunities
Our new soy sourcing policy
A better-defined stance on novel ingredient sourcing and application
Advocating for a responsible blue whiting fishery
Nigeria catfish project


Good citizenship

We believe in supporting the local communities in which we operate. This support can include helping schools, community development projects or supporting local industry by engaging in developing local feed raw material sources. We believe in empowering the people in our local operations so that they in turn can empower local communities.

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