MSC strategic plan — Marine Stewardship Council
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MSC strategic plan

The MSC has a vital role to play in safeguarding seafood resources through our certification and ecolabelling program for sustainable seafood. As a relatively small organisation, our Strategic Plans provide essential direction to help us make the greatest improvements to marine environments.

Looking forward to 2020: our strategic priorities

Recognising and rewarding sustainable fisheries and incentivising improvement globally; today 14% of global marine catch is either certified or engaged in the MSC program. The MSC aims to increase this figure to 20% by 2020, with an ambition of more than a third by 2030.

To achieve this the MSC will focus efforts on ecosystems currently underrepresented in the MSC program, but where catches and the threat to biodiversity are high. In addition to tuna and small pelagic species, new priority species will include squid, octopus, crab and seaweed. The MSC will also deliver new tools to better enable fisheries in the Global South to progress towards MSC certification. Over the next three years the MSC aims to double the number of fisheries from the Global South involved in its program.

Ensuring MSC certifications are credible and reflect global best practice; the MSC will maintain its focus on efforts to ensure we continue to meet global best practice in sustainable fisheries management. New measures, for example for labour practices, will be introduced, along with new tools and systems to make the certification process more efficient, credible and user-friendly, such as digital auditing tools.

Cultivating and expanding sustainable seafood markets; the MSC will deepen engagement with key commercial partners and focus on building demand in markets that offer the biggest incentives to drive change on the water. This includes European markets of Germany, the UK, France, Spain and Italy, as well as the US, China and Japan.

Building public awareness and support and demonstrating science and impact; the MSC will increase its scientific engagement and research, upgrading monitoring and evaluation systems and engaging in the wider ocean science and policy community. It will also continue to invest in research to understand consumer demand for sustainable seafood and will deliver campaigns to build public awareness and support for sustainable fishing and the MSC’s ecolabel.

Download a summary of the 2017-2020 MSC Strategic Plan > (PDF, 1319kb)

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