Retailer gains ASC approval

Dutch retailer HEMA has earned Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) Chain of Custody certification, which means it is now able to use the ASC logo when selling seafood from the council’s certified farms. 

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HEMA's current seafood offerings include ASC certified pangasius fillets and the company has committed to expanding the variety of responsibly certified species available to shoppers in the future.

The ASC programme is comprised of two components. The ASC Farm Certification and Accreditation is a strict set of standards that ensures seafood is produced in an environmentally and socially responsible manner at the source. Retailers and distributors can only use the ASC logo once they become ASC Chain of Custody (CoC) certified. The certification allows retailers to make a credible claim regarding the origin of the responsibly produced seafood they are offering and ensures that the product is fully traceable and, when necessary, segregated from non-certified seafood across the supply chain.

Newly released research by Dutch NGO Mileu Centraal studied and rated seafood labels, including ASC, on their performance in three categories – ambition for sustainability, transparency and trustworthiness – to ascertain the efficacy and impact of various certification schemes. The ASC took top marks for the overall scheme and achieved the highest scores in applicable individual categories corresponding to strength of environmental assessments, fair trading and social aspects for workers at the farm level, and the assessment process.