WATCH: Biodegradable FAD Workshops
Biodegradable fish aggregating devices (FADs) are made with natural materials that can break down over time and are less harmful to the marine environment. In contrast, traditional FADs are made with man-made materials that, when not retrieved after fishing, persist in and pollute the oceans.
We’re working with fishers, scientists and industry to find the best non-entangling designs and natural materials for fish aggregating devices (FADs) that can biodegrade.
A new video offers an overview of recent workshops in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean that are part of this ongoing effort.
Biodegradable FADs in WCPO Tuna Fisheries
The Common Oceans ABNJ Tuna Project has been working closely with ISSF to accelerate the use of biodegradable materials in fish aggregating devices (FADs). This initiative addresses some of the challenges facing tuna fisheries by implementing best practice solutions to reduce the amount of plastic materials used to construct fishing devices, in an effort to achieve sustainable fisheries practices and biodiversity conservation.
New ISSF Conservation Measure to Bolster FAD Management across Global Tuna Fisheries
ISSF announced the adoption of a new conservation measure requiring that fishing vessels have publicly available fish aggregation device (FAD) management policies to comply with ISSF supply-chain recommendations for marine ecosystem health. These policies must be in line with science-based best practices outlined in ISSF’s report, “Recommended Best Practices for FAD Management in Tropical Tuna Purse Seine Fisheries.”
“Since ISSF’s founding 10 years ago, we’ve prioritized better management of FADs and the reduction of bycatch and other marine ecosystem impacts across all oceans,” explains ISSF President Susan Jackson. “This new conservation measure gives leading seafood companies a clear framework, based on years of scientific research, in sourcing tuna from vessels that are following best practices in designing, deploying, and recovering FADs – and also in reporting FAD data to Regional Fisheries Management Organizations (RFMOs).”
The International Seafood Sustainability Foundation (ISSF) is a global coalition of scientists, the tuna industry and World Wildlife Fund (WWF) — the world’s leading conservation organization — promoting science-based initiatives for the long-term conservation and sustainable use of tuna stocks, reducing bycatch and promoting ecosystem health. Helping global tuna fisheries meet sustainability criteria to achieve the Marine Stewardship Council certification standard — without conditions — is ISSF's ultimate objective. In 2019, ISSF celebrated a “Decade of Discovery” as the organization completed its tenth year of scientific research, advocacy and industry engagement. To learn more, visit iss-foundation.org, and follow ISSF on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.