MONTEREY, Calif., Feb. 1, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — The Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch® program – already the global standard for environmentally responsible seafood – today launches the Seafood Slavery Risk Tool, the first solution of its kind to help businesses assess the potential risk of forced labor, human trafficking, and hazardous child labor in fisheries. The tool is available at seafoodslaveryrisk.org.
The Seafood Slavery Risk Tool – originally created with Liberty Asia, Seafish and the Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP) and now jointly run by the aquarium with Liberty Asia and SFP – produces a rating indicating the likelihood that human trafficking, forced labor and hazardous child labor are occurring on fishing boats in a specific fishery. Businesses can use the tool to identify seafood sourced from fisheries that have these issues and take steps to address them.
“Understanding the environmental impact of fishing and aquaculture is key to seafood sustainability,” said Monterey Bay Aquarium Executive Director Julie Packard. “The working conditions of the people who produce our seafood are equally important. The new Risk Tool developed by Seafood Watch and our partners will give major businesses insight into the possibility of human rights abuses in their supply chains. They can then work with suppliers to correct problems, toward the goal of achieving a seafood supply that’s sustainable for both the ocean and the people whose livelihoods depend on fishing and seafood processing jobs.”
Multiple reports from the Associated Press, The New York Times and The Guardian raised public awareness about the scope of human rights abuses in the global seafood supply chain, but there were no readily-available resources businesses could use to begin solving them. Seafood Watch and its partners developed the Seafood Slavery Risk Tool in response to conversations with its business partners and requests for support from the seafood and financial industries.
The tool is a means for businesses to identify potentially high-risk fisheries in their supply chains. It also encourages businesses to engage directly with suppliers to correct abuses. As a corporate partner of the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch program, The Cheesecake Factory Incorporated sees this tool as the first of many, filling a gap in the seafood supply chain with respect to transparency in sourcing.
“Our sustainable sourcing policy is built on transparency in our supply chain and respect for human rights, including those of the farmers and fisheries growing and