Seafood Future JUNE 2021 IMPACT & PROGRESS REPORT
A Letter From Our CEO: Last year we launched our Seafood Future platform, a bold set of commitments designed to
protect and nurture the ocean and those who depend on it for their livelihood. Little did we know
that the following year and a half would be extraordinary, marked by a worldwide pandemic that impacted the world in ways we never could have imagined.
Despite the many challenges, we never lost sight of our sustainability and social impact
commitments and were able to meet (and even accelerate) many of our goals. I am extremely
proud of the progress we have made. Yet, there is more to be done. The events of this year have reinforced the reality that we are living in a world where we are inextricably linked both to each other and with nature. It is essential that we all nurture this wonderful planet that feeds us.
For The Bumble Bee Seafood Company, that means we will continue to aggressively tackle the challenges of sustainable fishing, safe and fair labor practices, and plastic waste. We are also adding support to our Seafood Future platform to include organizations doing incredible work
restoring crucial ocean ecosystems through regenerative ocean practices.
We know that to help feed our growing population, we must make protecting and nurturing our amazing ocean a core part of our business practices and strategies for many years to come.
–J an Tharp
Our Vision for Sustainability & Social Impact
Champion sustainable fishing and advocate for fishers, setting tomorrow’s standards through our actions today.
Providing seafood from sustainable sources and including ocean-inspired alternatives.
Sustainable Sourcing & Alternatives
Sustaining Fisheries No single aspect is more important, or more central, to the sustainability program of The Bumble Bee Seafood Company than ensuring the responsible management of fisheries from which we source. We supply products from sustainable, well-managed, healthy fisheries and from areas that have action plans to return the fishery to a thriving state. As a founding member of International Seafood Sustainability Foundation (ISSF), we follow their best practices in sustainable fishing and independent science-based research data to validate our approach. We also seek third-party recognition and certification of the fisheries from which we source, and work to continuously improve fisheries through Fishery Improvement Projects (FIPs) and direct partnerships.
Our Commitment - All seafood sourced will be externally recognized as sustainable or in a formal program moving towards certification by 2025. The catch of today - We are on track to meet these 2025 commitments. Currently, 42% of our supply meets these goals. Looking ahead - In some species this year, we have met that goal or accelerated this commitment to not only branded, but private label products as well.
The Global Sustainable Seafood Initiative The GSSI works with companies including The Bumble Bee Seafood Company, NGOs, governments and international organizations to tackle complex, global sustainability challenges in the seafood industry. The organization ensures confidence in the supply and promotion of certified seafood and promotes improvement in the seafood certification schemes. Progress towards meeting our goals is summarized on the next page.
Our Goals By Species Commitment
Albacore tuna Skipjack tuna Wild salmon Sardines
Quahog clams Specialty product species (crab, mackerel, shrimp, oysters, etc.)
Credible FIP/P&L-handline by 2023 MSC/credible FIP/P&L-handline by 2025
3-ocean, 3-species, 6-flag state MSC certification project to be completed by 2023
MSC by 2022
New sourcing programs and conversion activities are ongoing
MSC by 2022
100% MSC certified
GSSI recognized, in credible FIP or recognized as well-managed, healthy fisheries by third parties by 2025
57% meets goal New FIP programs launched
MSC as of 2020
GSSI recognized, in credible FIP or recognized as well-managed, healthy fisheries by third parties by 2025
Moving forward with sustainable sourcing on all specialty species
FIP: Fishery Improvement Project P&L: Pole & Line Caught
MSC: Marine Stewardship Council GSSI: Global Sustainable Seafood Initiative
AIP: Aquaculture Improvement Program
The Bumble Bee Seafood Company and parent company Fong Chun Formosa (FCF) are proud to announce the two new longline fishery certification assessments which will span six flag states, three oceans, three species and more than 250 vessels with a goal of completion by the end of 2022. This represents the largest MSC longline assessment to date.
Large-Scale Longline Assessments 6 FLAG STATES
Including Taiwan, Fiji, Vanuatu
Pacific, Indian, Atlantic
The assessments will cover predominantly albacore tuna and represent approximately 50% of our albacore tuna production. The new MSC assessments and FIP programs will allow us to achieve our Seafood Future 2025 goals for albacore tuna: to supply customers product that is sourced solely from MSC certified fisheries, in MSC assessment or credible FIPs, or caught using pole and line handline gear by the end of 2021, years ahead of our original timing.
Ocean-Inspired Alternatives An increasing demand for plant-based Seafood
When we launched our partnership with Gathered Foods, makers of plant-based seafood company Good Catch last year, we wanted to provide a way for all consumers to enjoy ocean-inspired foods. Good Catch products are now available in over 5,500 stores across the US & Canada, and total US retail sales of plant-based foods grew 27% last year.* The brand has made major moves into food service recently, including permanent menu items at Veggie Grill and Bareburger, and their plant- based tuna salad is in over 200 Whole Foods prepared foods sections.
Forbes | “Gathered Foods Reels in New Investment to Grow Plant-Based Seafood Line” | 2021
Oceans MAY 25
Creating healthier marine ecosystems.
Tackling Plastic Waste
Our commitment to preventing plastic marine debris is two-fold: first, to package our product in readily recyclable materials and second, to address the challenge of lost and abandoned fishing equipment (ghost gear).
Pilot Program With the Global Ghost Gear Initiative
Readily Recyclable 96%
of our packaging is readily recyclable*
of steel containers and packaging are recycled in the US. The rate of aluminum packing recycling is 50.4%.** Metal cans are of the few food packages that can be recycled repeatedly without losing quality. This saves a significant amount of energy compared to producing a can from new materials.
*Full breakdown of The Bumble Bee Seafood Company packaging: Steel: 67.05% | Aluminum: 8.66% | Corrugate: 15.80% | Plastic: 3.73% Paper: 2.08% | Glass: 1.72% ** Information source: https://www.epa.gov/
of our packaging was made from metal in 2020.
In 2020, we launched a test program with Ocean Conservancy’s Global Ghost Gear Initiative® to reduce, reuse and recycle abandoned, lost or discarded fishing gear in Indonesia. The project aims to identify the root cause for ghost gear, test methods to tag, recover and remove fishing gear and explore innovative approaches to upcycle used equipment. The project was heavily impacted by COVID-19 and a shift in leadership within the Indonesian Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries in 2020. The team continued to encrypt wooden gear markers with RFID (radio frequency identification tag) codes for scanning and prepared a mobile phone app and accompanying portal for entry and storage of gear marker data. Recently, Ocean Conservancy received an executed arrangement from the Indonesia Ministry of Coordinating Affairs, restarting the project activities.
Best Practices We use a number of best practices in longline and purse seine fishing, including: Circle hooks
Difficult for non-target species to swallow and less harmful to released fish Deep sets
Reduces accidental capture of surface level animals Skipper training
Specialized in proper handling practices
Our Commitment We will mitigate and reduce bycatch through a combination of sourcing objectives, utilization of best practices and innovation.
Reduces capture of sharks Bird scaring
Reduces interactions and harm to sea birds
We are supporting the extensive work on fish aggregating devices (FADs) done by the International Seafood Sustainability Foundation – covering both FADs that reduce bycatch and biodegradable FADs (bamboo and cloth construction) that reduce the impact of beaching and debris.
Looking Ahead We are in dialogue with NGOs, collaborative groups,
and scientific organizations to expand these programs.
Shark finning prohibited A policy since 2012 Fin fish for bait
Reduces interactions with sea turtles and some sharks Non-entangling Fish Aggregating Devices (FADs) Reduces marine animal entanglement
Ocean regenerative practices are those that restore and regenerate the ocean ecosystem and simultaneously, sequester carbon for positive climate impact. We are partnering with two non-profit groups in this area.
SeaTrees is a project of the non-profit Sustainable Surf, an organization working with communities around the world to plant and protect “blue carbon” coastal ecosystems like mangrove and kelp forests, seagrass, and coral reefs. Learn more about SeaTrees here. Their projects do much more than sequester carbon. SeaTrees measures their impact with the UN Sustainable Development Goals, protecting and regenerating ecosystems that provide critical habitat for countless species, long-term employment for local communities, and defend those communities from storm surges and sea-level rise.
MANGROVES 5-10X THE CARBON STORAGE
OF ALL CARBON IS STORED IN THE OCEAN
CAN GROW UP TO 18 INCHES PER DAY
The ORP reconstructs oyster reefs in the Chesapeake Bay using recycled shells collected from local restaurants. They also monitor the sites for long-term recovery. Without intervention, oyster reefs will continue to decline over time due to negative effects of population growth, environmental change, harvesting practices, and disease. Learn more about the ORP here.
1 OYSTER CAN FILTER UP TO
50 GALLONS OF WATER EACH DAY
Initial Programs In the last decade, 80% of kelp forests have disappeared from the coast of Southern California, and 95% is gone from the northern part of the state. To help combat this loss of vital ecosystem, we pledged to restore the kelp sq ft equivalent of three Olympic-size swimming pools to the coast of Los Angeles (just south of our canning facility in Santa Fe Springs). In doing so, we joined forces with one of the largest and most successful ongoing kelp restoration projects in the world, supported by SeaTrees in direct partnership with The Bay Foundation. Additionally, we’re helping SeaTrees plant 15,000 mangrove trees off Biak Island, Indonesia.
We invested in the Oyster Recovery Partnership’s mission to restore oyster reefs, replanting 500,000 oysters in the Chesapeake Bay.
Looking Ahead We know we must do more to nurture the ocean. This is just the first year of a continuing commitment to leveraging regenerative ocean practices to speed up the Earth’s natural healing mechanisms.
15,000 MANGROVE TREES PLANTED
OLYMPIC-SIZE SWIMMING POOLS OF KELP RESTORED
500,000 OYSTERS RE-PLANTED
Ensuring safe and fair treatment of all who are connected to our business.
© ISSF (2012)
Photo: David Itano
In 2020, about 75% of our supply chain formally adopted our code of conduct. We are on track to reach 100% this year and have all fleets actively participating in FCF’s social audit programs. We recently expanded the program to include a “Worker Voice” system for vessels that our company sources product from.
By 2025, all tuna fleets that Bumble Bee purchases from will be covered by an audit program with third-party oversight.
These programs allow us to identify and mitigate communication gaps between fishing companies, recruitment agencies and the crew members.
Our social audit program includes extensive training, a risk-based screening approach, third party audits covering vessels and program management, along with multiple approaches to ensure effective Worker Voice components. The Worker’s Voice platform gives fishermen the opportunity to provide feedback on their working environment and vessel compliance. Since May 2021, we are also working with an NGO to roll out an anonymous complaint mechanism where crew members are able to file anonymous complaints with NGOs via the platform.
Social Audit Programs
processes to make them more efficient, effective, and transparent, we know the credibility of these social programs will depend on diligent oversite and 3rd party audit verification.
Worker Voice 20% vessels implemented worker survey within first 2 months
Social Audits 40% fleet coverage by 3rd party audits end of 2021
Think Global Act Local
In a year where it was tough to get together, our teams connected and made a difference in the communities in which we operate. From North America to Indonesia, here’s where we gave back:
Feature | Anova Our Anova® brand is a provider of frozen seafood who leads the industry on food safety, sustainability and social responsibility. Their latest community project expands their 2011 program that installed water filtration systems in three orphanages across the island of Bali. This time, they are looking to install the filtration systems in primary schools located in the drier regions of East Bali, where access to clean drinking water is difficult. North America
Safe drinking water for kids The project has two goals: to provide a source of safe drinking water for the kids at school and eliminate the need for single-use plastic water bottles by providing each student with a reusable bottle. After having tested a few different filtration systems, Anova is planning to roll the program out to more schools located in remote fishing communities in Maluku and North Maluku province where they source their Fair Trade tuna. Additionally, the group plans to complement this approach with extra-curricular activities for the students that educate on the harm plastic waste has on the environment. Each school will also be incentivized to introduce proper waste disposal systems as part of this program.
Community in Action Our commitment: Have at least one ongoing project in every community in which we have a meaningful presence in the U.S. and abroad. Our progress: Added our first North-American wide community event and an ongoing kelp restoration project to the coastline area of our cannery in Santa Fe Springs.
Keeping Our Communities Clean
During the many cleanups held throughout the year, team members of The Bumble Bee Seafood Company took action in their local communities to prevent trash from reaching the ocean. Highlights included the annual cleanup of the New Brunswick Nature Trust, the Cape May Beach Sweep, Bali’s Biggest Cleanup, and the “I Love A Clean Planet” event open to all team members across North America in support of Global Recycling Day.
Feeding People’s Lives
Through programs like the Blacks Harbour Elementary School Breakfast Program and the San Diego Rescue Mission, which reached over 500 people, we fed those in need.
Our Work Continues We are proud of the work that’s been achieved through a
number of bold steps we’ve taken in the past year - from
kicking off our ambitious MSC longline assessment project, to
our improved labor practices, to our multiple local community projects.
This momentum has swept us into the second year of our
Seafood Future platform with an ever-growing sense of commitment and an unwavering intention to protect and nurture our wonderful ocean.
As we move forward, we do so with an intense focus on the
execution of the projects we have started: continuing to use
science to manage fish stocks, reducing bycatch, protecting/ restoring
safeguards, we will contribute to healthier, more abundant
ocean; shaping our economies and feeding our planet for generations to come.