Boston, MA – Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP) today announced the commitment by leading squid producers in the United States, Spain, Canada, and the United Kingdom to address illegal, unregulated and unreported (IUU) fishing through new and strengthened purchasing policies. The commitment was presented on a panel at Seafood Expo North America hosted by SFP’s Global Policy Director Braddock Spear, “Combating IUU Fishing: The Case of High Seas Squid.” 

“The panel highlighted that most high-seas squid fisheries are unregulated. Today, we heard exciting news that a growing coalition of companies are taking actions this year that are part of a longer-term vision for addressing this issue.”   

The commitment was made by the Squid IUU Prevention Working Group, comprised of 16 major squid producers, including Cabomar, Congalsa, Crocker & Winsor Seafoods, Grupo Alfrio, Lund’s Fisheries, Inc., Sun Coast Calamari, Sea Farms, PanaPesca, The Town Dock and WOFCO.

By the end of 2022, the companies in the Working Group will:

Adopt new purchasing policies or strengthen current ones to incentivize sourcing from legal producers, and ban imports of IUU squid products. 

The companies will also establish a governance and funding mechanism for the group, adopt a plan to address social responsibility issues, and engage regulators and other actors to commit resources to improve squid management and eliminate IUU fishing.  

“Given the lack of management in most squid fisheries globally, our companies face commercial and environmental risks,” said Sarah Hussey, fisheries manager at Sea Farms and industry co-chair of the Global Squid Supply Chain Roundtable (SR). “We accept that we alone cannot fix these issues. But, we believe we can work together with our supply chains and governments to improve management, stability of squid stocks and welfare of workers within the supply chains around the world.” 

The Squid IUU Prevention Working Group was formed in July 2021 by some members of SFP’s Global Squid Supply Chain Roundtable (SR), a group of squid buyers and importers who work together pre-competitively to drive improvement efforts in squid fisheries practices, management, and policy. As importers and distributors of processed squid products, the Working Group members are united in their desire to clearly prohibit IUU-sourced squid products and labor and human rights abuses in their supply chains.

The Working Group expects to announce a formal agreement at Seafood Expo Global in Barcelona, Spain, in April 2022. The Working Group continues to invite and recruit other squid producers and suppliers worldwide to join their effort to stop IUU fishing.