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Rio 2016 to support MSC and ASC certified seafood


The Rio 2016 Organising Committee for the Olympic and Paralympic Games today announced a comprehensive agreement to promote Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) and Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) certified seafood at the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

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Sustainable seafood firmly on the menu

The landmark announcement means that all of the seafood served to the athletes, officials, press and at the onsite restaurants will be certified as sustainably wild caught (MSC) and responsibly farmed (ASC). With over 14 million meals served over 27 days, the Olympic and Paralympic Games’ catering represents a huge challenge for every host city and is described as the largest peacetime catering operation in the world.

Julie Duffus, Sustainability Manager for the Rio 2016 Organising Committee, said: "We are looking forward to working in partnership with MSC and ASC to support the respected work that they have done, and continue to do, with the fisheries and fish farms of Brazil. This will ensure that our catering not only improves the local food industry but improves it to a standard that will leave a lasting, positive legacy post Games for Rio de Janeiro and Brazil."

Making a global impact together

Memorandums of Understanding (MOU) between Rio 2016 and the ASC and Rio 2016 and the MSC were signed, reflecting the Rio 2016 Organising Committee’s commitment to organise and stage the Games in such a way as to minimize adverse effects on and maximize benefits to the environment, promote sustainable development, and raise public awareness and action regarding environmental protection.

© Luiz Barros - Ascom Sedrap

"Rio 2016 aims to use the transformational power of the Olympic and Paralympic Games to enhance, promote and celebrate the fantastic variety of Brazilian seafood," said Leila Luiz, Head of Food & Beverage for Rio 2016.

Commitment will boost fisheries worldwide

The MSC has made a strong, long-term commitment to Latin America. Rupert Howes, chief executive of the MSCl, expressed gratitude and excitement about the agreement with Rio 2016.  

"This partnership provides a great opportunity to promote and reward sustainable fisheries in Brazil. We will be working closely over the coming years with the State of Rio to encourage local fisheries into the third party assessment process and hope that fish and seafood caught from these and other fisheries that have met MSC's standard will be available for the 14 million meals that will be served during the Games."

The announcement also underscores the strength of the ASC in helping the aquaculture sector become environmentally sustainable and socially responsible. Chris Ninnes, ASC chief executive commented: “I look forward to seeing many small scale farms across the state of Rio recognised for their good management. The collective action of the farms that enter the ASC programme will undoubtedly have a positive effect for the future of aquaculture in the region as it moves towards environmental sustainability – this is an important legacy and I hope other states follow the example of Rio.”

Laurent Viguié, Brazil Manager for ASC and MSC, said: "The Rio 2016 Olympic Organising Committee recognizes a common vision with the MSC and ASC to conserve, protect, enhance and support natural resources, including biological diversity worldwide, and to support efforts to source and supply responsibly farmed and sustainable wild caught seafood for the 2016 Games. The majority of which will be from locally sourced small scale farms and artisanal fisheries."

Further information

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