Our Public Consultation Period is Currently Open (until October 2019)

We periodically review our standards to ensure we take into account developments in the scientific understanding of the impacts of fisheries and aquaculture operations and how producers and managers can help. Public consultation on the current standards review runs from March-October 2019, with two specific consultation periods March 4-May 3 and August-October. Public comments received during the first period were considered by the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) meeting in May and incorporated, where relevant, in any proposed revisions to the standard ready for the second public consultation period. Comments received in the second period will be considered by the TAC in the fall. All comments will be considered by the Multi-stakeholder Group (MSG) in early 2020. All comments, including TAC and MSG comments, will be posted to this site. Comments are welcome at any time; those received after the second consultation period in October will be considered in our next standard review cycle in 2024-2025.

Please refer to the 2019-2020 Standards Review section below for complete instructions and details.

Our Standards

The most recent published standards, approved by our Multi-Stakeholder Group on October 4, 2016, include the 2016 Standard for Salmonid Fisheries as well as revisions to our 2016 Standard for Fisheries and 2016 Standard for Aquaculture. 

How it Works

The process for review involves consultation with experts, two 60-day public consultation periods and an annual meeting of the Multi-Stakeholder Group (MSG) to approve any revisions. The MSG is the decision-making body for approving Seafood Watch standards and it was modeled after the guidelines set in ISEAL’s standard setting code. To learn more about the formal process for review, please refer to the following documents: 

2019-2020 Standards Review 

The 2019-2020 standards review cycle will run from February 2019–February 2020. The Public Summary, Work Program and Timeline documents below provide an overview of the process and scope of the review. 

 

2020 Proposed Changes Feedback

There are two 60-day public consultation periods during this review cycle. Input from the public and expert working groups received since the current standards were published in 2016 will be taken into consideration during this review cycle.

First Public Consultation
The first public consultation period took place between March 4–May 3, 2019. The consultation documents for the first public consultation period are below, along with summaries of the public comments received and summaries of the Technical Advisory Meetings held in May. All responses received can be found at the bottom of this page.

Second Public Consultation
The second public consultation period will take place August 19–October 18, 2019. Comments received will be posted at the bottom of this page, and a summary of those and of the TAC meeting in the fall, will be posted alongside the comment drafts below. View a highlight of the proposed revisions. Please send completed consultation documents to sfwstandardreview@mbayaq.org.

 


2017-2018 Standards Review

During the 2017 Multi-Stakeholder meeting there were no proposed revisions to the Seafood Watch Standards for Fisheries or Aquaculture. As such, no revisions are planned until the next cycle in 2019. Based on feedback from the 2016 Multi-Stakeholder meeting, the 2017 Multi-Stakeholder meeting focused more broadly on various big picture topics, which necessitated the inclusion of expert advisors, representing a variety of sectors and projects, with which Seafood Watch is currently involved. If you have comments you would like to have considered in the next cycle, please submit them via email to sfwstandardreview@mbayaq.org

A number of Expert Working Group meetings were planned for 2017-2018. The outcomes of these are or will be summarized below and will also be incorporated into the 2019 review cycle. More information on these can be found in the 2017-2018 Work Program below:


2016 Standards Review

If you have comments on the process, the Standard for Fisheries v1, the Standard for Fisheries v2, the Standard for Aquaculture v1 and/or the Standard for Aquaculture v2 that are outside the scope of the 2016 Standards Review, please submit comments to SFWStandardReview@mbayaq.org for consideration during the next major revision cycle (2019/2020). The following documents provide more information on the timeline and objectives for the 2016 Standards Review. Please read the 2016 Public Summary and the Terms of Reference before submitting your comments.

  • 2016 Public Summary (PDF): Includes information about Seafood Watch, an overview of the standards (including scope, justification of need and objectives), how interested parties can contribute, the timeline for review, the decision-making procedures and contact details.
  • 2016 Work Program (PDF): Identifies which standards will be reviewed and contact details.

 

2016 Proposed Changes Feedback

The first public consultation period was held in July 2016 and the second was held in August/September 2016. Comments on the proposed changes and information requests received during these consultations were considered by the Multi-Stakeholder Group in October 2016. All comments to other areas of the Standards will be considered in the next Seafood Watch Standards Review in 2019.

First Public Consultation
There were two public consultation periods during the 2014-2015 revision cycle that allowed for input on the 2016 Standard for Salmonid Fisheries; comments received are posted below. Comments received during this third Public Consultation (summer of 2016) were appended to the 2014-2015 comments taken into consideration by the Technical Advisory Committee and Multi-Stakeholder Group in October 2016.

Second Public Consultation
Public consultation on non-major changes to the 2016 Seafood Watch Standard for Fisheries and the 2016 Seafood Watch Standard for Aquaculture was from August 18, 2016 through September 18, 2016. Our intent with these changes was to improve clarity and ease of use of each Standard, but there were two areas which could potentially be more substantive. These were 1) when to use the Unknown Bycatch Matrices in the Standard for Fisheries and 2) the appropriate assumed percentage of harvested farmed fish byproduct used for further protein production in the Standard for Aquaculture.

 

2015 Standards Review

The 2015 Standard Review took place October 2014 through Winter 2015. We proposed changes to our previous Standard for Fisheries and Standard for Aquaculture, a new standard for Salmonid Fisheries as well as an additional criterion for fisheries and aquaculture operations to assess greenhouse gas emissions. The following documents provide more information on the timeline and objectives for the 2015 Standard Review.

  • 2015 Public Summary (PDF): Includes information about Seafood Watch, an overview of the standards (including scope, justification of need and objectives), how interested parties can contribute, the timeline for revision, the decision-making procedures and contact details.
  • 2015 Work Program (PDF): Identifies which standards will be revised and contact details.

 

2015 Proposed Changes Feedback

There were two Public Consultation periods during this review cycle. 

First Public Consultation
The first Public Consultation occurred October 27 to January 16, 2015 to be considered in the first Technical Advisory Committee meeting. Anyone who had major comments was encouraged to submit their comments during this comment period.

Second Public Consultation
The second Public Consultation occurred July 2 to August 2, 2015. This consultation was for feedback on the draft standards after public comment and Technical Advisory Committee advice was incorporated. Comments received after this public consultation were recorded for consideration during the next review cycle (2019/2020).

Multi-Stakeholder Group (MSG) Draft Standard Documents
The documents below were considered by the MSG September 29-30, 2015.

2015 Approval Summaries
The Multi-Stakeholder Group approved the standards for fisheries and aquaculture (v3.1) on September 30, 2015. The documents below provide an overview, key outcomes and FAQs from that meeting.


Comments Received

Public Consultation 1 (October 2014 -January 2015)

Company / Organization Date Received Comments
Environmental Defense Fund Tuesday, February 10, 2015 11:35 PM Download
Marine Harvest Tuesday, February 10, 2015 11:25 PM Download
SeaChoice Tuesday, February 10, 2015 11:24 PM Download
Jim Harper Tuesday, February 10, 2015 11:24 PM Download
Elliott Campbell Tuesday, February 10, 2015 11:24 PM Download
World Animal Protection Tuesday, February 10, 2015 11:23 PM Download
Pamela Mace Tuesday, February 10, 2015 11:23 PM Download
Oceana Tuesday, February 10, 2015 11:23 PM Download
Alison Cross Tuesday, February 10, 2015 11:22 PM Download
Rob Wenman Tuesday, February 10, 2015 11:22 PM Download
Trevor Ward Tuesday, February 10, 2015 11:21 PM Download
Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (Fisheries) Tuesday, February 10, 2015 11:21 PM Download
Strategic Earth Tuesday, February 10, 2015 11:21 PM Download
Oceanwise Tuesday, February 10, 2015 11:20 PM Download
Skretting Tuesday, February 10, 2015 11:20 PM Download
Marine Harvest Tuesday, February 10, 2015 11:19 PM Download
Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (Aquaculture) Tuesday, February 10, 2015 11:19 PM Download
Global Aquaculture Alliance Tuesday, February 10, 2015 11:18 PM Download
Cooke Aquaculture Tuesday, February 10, 2015 11:17 PM Download
SeaChoice Tuesday, February 10, 2015 11:15 PM Download

Public Consultation 2 (July - August 2015)

Company / Organization Date Received Comments
MARINA Lab, School of Marine and Environmental Affairs, University of Washington (Aquaculture) Monday, September 28, 2015 8:11 PM Download
MARINA Lab, School of Marine and Environmental Affairs, University of Washington (Fisheries) Monday, September 28, 2015 8:11 PM Download
Sustainable Fisheries Partnership Monday, September 28, 2015 7:59 PM Download
Marine Harvest Canada Monday, September 28, 2015 7:59 PM Download
Living Oceans Society Monday, September 28, 2015 7:59 PM Download
Kathryn Kostow, Coffee Creek Bioscience Monday, September 28, 2015 7:59 PM Download
University of California, Merced Monday, September 28, 2015 7:58 PM Download
WWF Monday, September 28, 2015 7:58 PM Download
Sustainable Fisheries Partnership Monday, September 28, 2015 7:58 PM Download
Dr Pamela Mace, Fisheries Scientist Monday, September 28, 2015 7:58 PM Download
International Seafood Sustainability Foundation Monday, September 28, 2015 7:58 PM Download

Public Consultation 3 (Summer 2016)

Company / Organization Date Received Comments
Alison Cross, WWF-US Tuesday, March 7, 2017 6:06 PM Download
Megan Atcheson/Dan Averill, Marine Stewardship Council Tuesday, March 7, 2017 6:06 PM Download
Kathryn Kostow, Independent Reviewer Coffee Creek Bioscience Tuesday, March 7, 2017 6:06 PM Download
Stuart Ellis, CRITFC Tuesday, March 7, 2017 6:06 PM Download
David Gaudet, Alaska Fisheries Development Foundation, Pacific Seafood Processors Association Tuesday, March 7, 2017 6:05 PM Download
Matthew Sloat, Wild Salmon Center Tuesday, March 7, 2017 6:05 PM Download
Kathryn Kostow, Independent Reviewer Coffee Creek Bioscience Tuesday, March 7, 2017 6:03 PM Download

Public Consultation 4 (August - September 2016)

Company / Organization Date Received Comments
Turtle Island Restoration Network Friday, October 21, 2016 8:45 PM Download
Marine Harvest Canada Thursday, October 20, 2016 5:37 PM Download

Public Consultation 5 (March-April 2019)

Company / Organization Date Received Comments
Alasdair Lindop: Ocean Wise Seafood Thursday, May 30, 2019 10:33 PM Download
Andrew Hough (Coordinator) and Christina Burridge (Chair): Association of Sustainable Fisheries Thursday, May 30, 2019 10:32 PM Download
Juliana Herrera: Fair Trade USA Thursday, May 30, 2019 10:32 PM Download
Lynn Kavanagh: Global Ghost Gear Initiative / World Animal Protection Thursday, May 30, 2019 10:32 PM Download
Cecilia Blasco: SmartFish Rescate de Valor, AC Thursday, May 30, 2019 10:32 PM Download
Kate Kauer: The Nature Conservancy Thursday, May 30, 2019 10:32 PM Download
Kate Kauer: The Nature Conservancy California Thursday, May 30, 2019 10:31 PM Download
Jenna Stoner: Sustainable Fisheries Partnership Thursday, May 30, 2019 10:23 PM Download
Peter Bridson: Seagreen Research Thursday, May 30, 2019 10:23 PM Download
Kelly Roebuck, Living Oceans Society: SeaChoice Thursday, May 30, 2019 10:23 PM Download
Randy Repass Thursday, May 30, 2019 10:22 PM Download
Jim Parsons, President: National Aquaculture Association Thursday, May 30, 2019 10:22 PM Download
Katherine Dolmage: Mowi Canada West Thursday, May 30, 2019 10:22 PM Download
Remko Oosterveld: GLOBALG.A.P. c/o FoodPLUS GmbH Thursday, May 30, 2019 10:22 PM Download
Juliana Herrera: Fair Trade USA Thursday, May 30, 2019 10:22 PM Download
F3 Team: F3 Future of Fish Feed Thursday, May 30, 2019 10:21 PM Download
Josh Goldman, CEO: Australis Aquaculture, LLC Thursday, May 30, 2019 10:21 PM Download
Anonymous Thursday, May 30, 2019 10:21 PM Download