Seafood assurance programme launched

The New Zealand seafood industry now has a one-stop source for information.

OpenSeas is a third-party verified, broad-based transparency initiative designed to enable customers of New Zealand seafood, primarily international customers, a single, comprehensive source of information about the environmental, social and production credentials of the New Zealand seafood industry.

The site was launched at the New Zealand Seafood Industry conference in Wellington last week.

Programme Manager Jodie Campbell said OpenSeas was a year in the making and brought together over 20 industry experts and five regulatory agencies to contribute to nearly 40 pages of website content.

“OpenSeas focuses on presenting short, digestible pieces of information about the New Zealand seafood industry, allowing users to retain and reuse the information within their own businesses,” Campbell said.

“Ultimately, it should enable customers of New Zealand seafood to make informed choices in line with their own sourcing policies.”

Information contained on OpenSeas includes New Zealand's approach to sustainable use of its vast marine environment, the systems and processes used to ensure supply chain integrity and the legal protections for the welfare of workers and indigenous communities involved in seafood production.

OpenSeas is made to be shared, with links, factsheets, reports and references found throughout the site, Campbell said.

“The OpenSeas programme is designed to assist business-to-business dialogue but is open, free of charge, for anyone to use.”

OpenSeas is currently undergoing independent certification for the programme's Quality Management System.  Achieving certification will be a reflection of the programme's commitment to meeting the information needs of businesses while ensuring accuracy and transparency are not compromised. The aim is to achieve certification within the first six months of the programme.

For more information about the programme, visit www.openseas.org.nz or contact hello@openseas.org.nz.