Building momentum for FIPs in SE Asia
The stepwise approach to MSC offered by the Fishery Improvement Project (FIP) model typically relies on market-based incentives, which in turn have been most effective for fisheries with strong export markets that demand sustainable seafood. For the most part, and without the pull of an export market, the small-scale fisheries that comprise most of the world’s fisheries remain outside the FIP milieu. Yet these fisheries have some of the most complex issues and thus offer significant potential for conservation gains. Consequently, there has been growing recognition of the need to make the FIP model more inclusive of and sensitive to small-scale fisheries, including those that may not seek certification as an end goal or for which certification is a long way off.
It’s been recognized there are a number of challenges impeding the scaling up of FIPs into this small-scale fisheries space including, but not limited to: data limitations and deficiencies; the suitability of existing Standards given the level of performance of these fisheries and their multi-species and multi gear nature; finding the right market and non-market incentives to keep these fisheries improving; financing their entry into and through the FIP process; appropriate business strategies; and engagement with both export and domestic supply chains.
To maximize the relevance of this workshop to the audience, the workshop organizers will use the time between now and June 2019 to take a qualitative deep dive and canvas widely with the global FIP community to shortlist what are seen as the most critical challenges and posit practical and constructive solutions, strategies and tools to better engage small-scale fisheries and help drive improvements in this crucial fisheries sector.