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

Looking forward to 2020

Our vision

For the world’s oceans to be teeming with life, and seafood supplies safeguarded for this and future generations.

Our 2020 goal

20% of global marine catch comes from MSC certified or engaged fisheries, supporting productivity and resilience in globally important marine ecosystems.

Our 2030 aspiration

More than a third of global marine catch certified or engaged by 2030. MSC is a leading catalyst for improved fisheries management and market transformation, contributing to the sustainable use of our oceans, supporting resilience, food security, and livelihoods.

Our 2017-20 Strategic Plan

The Strategic Plan outlines how we aim to achieve our aims under four pillars of work:

1. Recognizing and rewarding sustainable fisheries and incentivizing improvement

Today 14% of global marine catch is either certified or engaged in the MSC program. We aim to increase this figure to 20% by 2020, with an ambition of more than a third by 2030. 

To achieve this we 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.

2. 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 labor 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.

3. Cultivating and expanding sustainable seafood markets

We 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.

4. Building public awareness and support and demonstrating science and impact

We will increase our scientific engagement and research, upgrading monitoring and evaluation systems and engaging in the wider ocean science and policy community. We 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