Supply Chain Roundtable

Global Squid

The Global Squid Supply Chain Roundtable (GS SR) focuses on engaging supply chains and local producers to develop and implement fishery improvement projects (FIPs) and monitoring the progress of current squid FIP efforts toward long-term sustainability of squid in domestic and international markets. The SR is composed of European and North American importers and buyers of squid from Asia-Pacific and South American squid fisheries.

The SR works to catalyze improvements in squid fisheries around the world. Current SR participants have expressed interest in FIPs in China (mitre squid and Japanese flying squid), Peru (jumbo flying squid), and Argentina (Argentine shortfin squid). Additional fisheries of interest that may be covered by this SR include Patagonian squid, jumbo flying squid in South America, and common squids in India.

Sector Snapshot

6 Squid FIPs

29 Roundtable Participating Companies

2 Certified/Sustainable Squid Fisheries

15 % Global Squid Production Improving

Join This Roundtable

To join this Supply Chain Roundtable or for more information, please contact Carmen Gonzalez Valles or call SFP at 1-808-726-2582. 

2021 Update:

  • Peru Jumbo Flying Squid: CAPECAL (the Peruvian Chamber for Jumbo Flying Squid) has been formalized and already includes 16 members who represent more than 50 percent of Peruvian production. CAPECAL will jointly coordinate a FIP with WWF. The group is also supporting the fleet formalization process.
  • Chile Jumbo Flying Squid: An MSC pre-assessment was presented in December 2020 to La Coordinadora Nacional de Jibieros, and a FIP workplan was developed. The producers need support from supply chain companies to launch a FIP.
  • South Pacific JFS - CALAMASUR (Committee for the Sustainable Management of Jumbo Flying Squid) support: At the last commission meeting, two new conservation and management measures (CMMs) were approved. In July 2021, the first two Peruvian vessels were registered with the South Pacific Regional Fisheries Management Organization (SPRFMO).
  • Argentine shortfin squid: An MSC pre-assessment financed by several SR members was finalized before the end of 2020 and presented to CAPA (Argentinian Chamber of Squid Jigger Vessel owners), which expressed interest in launching a FIP in the Argentine shortfin squid fishery. No further advances have been made so far.
  • Squid IUU working group: Several reports have been published about IUU issues and human rights abuses in squid fisheries. SFP raised awareness among SR members about the risks faced by international supply chains on this matter. As a result, 16 companies showed interest in working together to tackle and eradicate IUU fishing and human rights abuses from squid supply chains. An IUU prevention working group was formalized within the SR in early 2021. The group is working with external experts to define its future strategy to eliminate IUU fishing and human right abuses in squid fisheries.

Sector Background

Currently, 15 percent of global squid production is considered sustainable or improving, up from just 0.03 percent in 2017. Existing supply chain leverage and interest may be able to influence nearly 60 percent of global production. The key to reaching T75 goals will be engaging Chinese and South Korean fisheries operating in the international waters off South America.

The squid sector comprises all squid species (families: Gonatidae, Loliginidae, Ommastrephidae, Onychoteuthidae). Most production comes from industrial fisheries using a wide variety of fishing gears, including jigs, hook and line, purse seine, midwater, and bottom trawling, and operating within exclusive economic zones (EEZs) and in international waters. An important artisanal component operates in a number of EEZs, ranging from small vessels with outboard motors carrying two or three fishers to vessels of 15 meters or more carrying five or six fishers.

FAO reports that total global production of squid exceeds 3.7 million tonnes. Top producing regions include South America (Peru, Chile, Argentina) and Asia (China, South Korea, Japan, Indonesia). The jumbo flying squid (Dosidicus gigas), the Argentine shortfin squid (Illex argentinus), and the Japanese flying squid (Todarodes pacificus) are the three most important squid fisheries in the world, accounting for about 50-60 percent of global production.

Progress toward sustainability in these three squid fisheries is mainly limited by the deficiency of fisheries assessment, management, and enforcement by national regulators; and the lack of control over distant-water fleets by regional management bodies, resulting in illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing.

Activity & Workplan

2021 SR Objectives

  • Support initiation of a FIP in the Argentine shortfin squid fishery within Argentinian EEZ waters.
  • Support CAPECAL and the implementation of the workplan of the Peru jumbo flying squid – jig FIP.
  • Support CALAMASUR and ask the SPRFMO to adopt new CMMs in the region.
  • Support the launch of a FIP in the Chilean jumbo flying squid fishery. 
  • Support improvement efforts and ensure that the Chinese (Shantou) Mitre Squid FIP and the East China Sea and Yellow Sea Japanese flying squid – trawl FIP workplans are implemented and progress is publicly reported on
  • Ensure all published FIPs receive an A-C SFP FIP progress rating.
  • Monitor and support efforts of the Indian squid (Loligo duvauceli) FIP through public reporting on

Action Recommendations for Suppliers

  • Undertake efforts to eliminate IUU fishing practices by distant-water fleets. Efforts may include piloting traceability systems, advocating for stronger regional and domestic enforcement and policy changes, participating in the SR’s IUU prevention working group, and piloting other supply chain approaches to ensure legal fishing practices in sourcing.
  • Work with supply chains to initiate FIPs in fisheries where improvements are needed, and ensure sourcing from actively engaged supply chains.
  • When sourcing from squid fisheries that are managed under seasonal closures, SR participants should ensure suppliers implement no-purchase policies during fishing moratoriums.
  • Exported squid products from the region are often sourced from a mix of various squid fisheries, so importers and buyers should ensure that their suppliers can identify the individual source fisheries. 
  • Reach out to other supply chain companies to encourage their participation and engagement in the SR.
  • Support the efforts of the Peruvian jumbo flying squid FIP.
  • Publicly support SPRFMO’s effort to develop a stock assessment methodology that is applicable to all jumbo flying squid fisheries within the South Pacific.
  • Publicly support establishing a shortfin squid FIP in Argentinian EEZ waters.
  • Publicly support establishing a JFS FIP in Chilean EEZ waters.
  • Promote and sponsor the update and development of squid fisheries assessments. 

Join This Roundtable

To join this Supply Chain Roundtable or for more information, please contact Carmen Gonzalez Valles or call SFP at 1-808-726-2582.