Peruse our original infographics, several of which are published in ISSF technical reports, on a variety of topics — from bycatch mitigationconservation measures, compliancefish aggregating devices (FADs), illegal fishing, and tuna stock status and harvest control rules to ISSF’s ProActive Vessel Register and Skippers Workshops.

Summary of Sustainable Tuna Stocks (MSC Principle 1)

Date added January 10, 2018
Downloaded 10 times
Category Infographics
Tags MSC Certification, Stock Status


The Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) has established a program whereby a fishery may be certified as being sustainable. The sustainability of a fishery is defined by MSC criteria embodied in three Principles: relating to the status of the stock (Principle 1), the ecosystem of which the stock is a member (Principle 2), and the fishery management system (Principle 3).

Since many of these MSC criteria are comparable for global tuna stocks, the MSC scoring system was used to evaluate 19 stocks of tropical and temperate tunas throughout the world (based on Principle 1) and also to evaluate the management systems of the Regional Fisheries Management Organizations (RFMOs) associated with these stocks (based on Principle 3). 

The 2017 ISSF report with P1 and P3 scores, ISSF 2017-09: An Evaluation of the Sustainability of Global Tuna Stocks Relative to Marine Stewardship Council Criteria, is authored by Paul A. H. Medley and Jo Gascoigne.

This graphic, based on data from the report, shows what the average scores based on Principle 1 have been, and how they have changed over time.

The MSC’s Principle 1 states: “A fishery must be conducted in a manner that does not lead to overfishing or depletion of the exploited populations and, for those populations that are depleted, the fishery must be conducted in a manner that demonstrably leads to their recovery.”