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CSRD: Are biodiversity and marine resources a blind spot?

A fictitious application of our Ecomer by Sayari tool, a demo version of which is available here.

It is now possible to assess the impacts and dependencies of your fishing portfolio when implementing CSRD. Thanks to the use of metrics recognized at European and UN level, we can quantify your impact on marine resources. We present here a fictitious example, with the Bien Manger company selling the following caught fish:

  • Saithe from North Sea and Barents
  • Yellowfin tuna from unknown source
  • Wild salmon, Northeast Pacific  (species undetermined)

And Surimi made from the following caught fish (in varying proportions):

  • Alaska Pollack, Pacific Northwest
  • Whiting, Northeast Atlantic

In our fictitious mission, we work with Bien Manger to assess its impact and dependence on the sustainability of marine resources. The first step is to identify the species concerned. If we take the example of the salmon sold by Bien Manger, there are 5 species in the North-East Pacific: king, keta, silver, pink and sockeye salmon. Some of these species are considered particularly at risk in terms of overexploitation. Only sockeye salmon presents a lower risk, with a « moderate risk » classification.

For these species, we then assess the population status (stocks) with the Ecomer® tool, using the STECF method[1]. This methodology results in a letter grade from A to E. By way of example, the results for whiting are shown below:

Figure 1. Assessment of the impact of fishing pressure on whiting stocks in the Northeast Atlantic and Black Sea. Fishing zones are colored according to the score obtained by stocks in that zone. Screenshot of the Ecomer by Sayari tool.

When quantities and sources are unknown and/or variable, we make assumptions, in conjunction with the company. In the present case, in the absence of more precise information from Bien Manger‘s purchasing department, we assume that its supply is representative of world fishing. We therefore take catch data for each of the stocks considered.

The results for the various species (and groups of species) are shown below:

Figure 2. Impact risk results for fish populations sold by Bien Manger. The best-performing sales (A) correspond to sustainably fished stocks, while the others correspond to different levels of overfishing risk, from low (B) to very high (E).

Bien Manger‘s risk to biodiversity through the exploitation of biotic resources lies mainly in the sourcing of wild salmon, and to a lesser extent in surimi and yellowfin tuna.

Secondly, together with the Bien Manger teams, we are defining a marine biodiversity strategy to improve the sustainability of the seafood offer. The various measures associated with this strategy are adapted to each species:

  • Saithe: gradual reduction in the share of the North Sea stock by the Barents Sea stock (healthier populations) with the aim of reaching 100% of saithe from the Barents Sea by 2027;
  • Tuna: develop better control of the supply chain, then redirect it towards higher-rated stocks, which are currently estimated to account for a smaller share of supply.
  • Surimi: develop better control of the supply chain, then guarantee that surimi does not come from over-fished whiting (stocks from the Celtic Seas). Eco-design for Hake is considered a lower priority.
  • Salmon: increase in the share of sockeye salmon in the wild salmon offer.

Figure 3. Strategy for improving Bien Manger‘s « fishing » portfolio. By improving the monitoring of species and stocks fished, and then redirecting sourcing towards stocks in good condition, we can eliminate the riskiest purchases, and favor those that are most respectful of biodiversity and marine resources.

By 2027, Bien Manger will have eliminated risks D and E from its portfolio . Future work will focus on reducing risk C. In addition, from 2025, an assessment of the impact on the seabed and protected species will be carried out to select the most virtuous fishing techniques. Finally, annual monitoring of the state of fish stocks supplying Bien Manger is necessary, as the health of s stocks fluctuates over time. The Ecomer by Sayari tool will enable Bien Manger to monitor its portfolio and adapt to these changes.

Would you like to follow Bien Manger‘s example and implement a marine biodiversity strategy for the products in your portfolio? Don’t hesitate to look at our services and contact us.

[1] STECF, « Scientific, Technical and Economic Committee for Fisheries (STECF) – Validation of selected sustainability indicators and underlying methodologies for the revision of the EU marketing standards for fisheries products (STECF-22-12) », 2022.

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