Tuna Policy

Recommendations for the Ecologically Sustainable Sourcing of Tuna Products Overview:

Our goal is to source tuna only from healthy and well-managed stocks, from fisheries using the most current best practice in methods, bycatch reduction and environmentally responsible, socially responsible, Non GMO, BPA free and priced reasonably for our consumers. We will work with our vendors to ensure that the product labels clearly identify the sustainable efforts to make it easy for our customers to choose sustainable products. As part of achieving this goal we are working to improve transparency and will implement an audit process including quarterly meetings with suppliers. We will support the ISSF’s common ground philosophy for supporting tuna sustainability (link to download http://iss-foundation.org/resources/downloads/?did=544). We will make a concerted effort to actively promote the products that meet or exceed the benchmarks set in this procurement policy. We will also work with other stakeholders such as the fishing industry, the community, environmental conservation groups and the Government to achieve our goals of sourcing sustainable tuna. We are proudly working with Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP) and other industry stakeholders to implement minimum sustainability standards for procurement practices of canned tuna. *At this time a commitment date has not been set to meet all of the criteria outlined in the policy. By the end of 2015 a date for complete implementation of this policy will be set*

Our Partnership:

We are business partners with Sustainable Fisheries Partnership. SFP is a NGO that operates in sustainable seafood through two main principles: information and improvement. Through our partnership with SFP we are able to collect key information about source fisheries to better understand the sustainability specific product and species. The information collected and evaluated includes scientific names of the species, location of harvest, type of gear used and fishery certification information. For additional information on SFP please visit http://sustainablefish.org. For additional information on tuna please visit the SFP website http://www.sustainablefish.org/global-programs/seafood-sectors/seafood-sectors-tuna.

Our Policy:

Gear Type:

Purse seine:

We encourage purse seine fishing vessels to target free-swimming tuna schools and to limit or eliminate harvest with the use of non-entangling FADs. We support improved management of FAD use. No transshipment at sea w/o observer and must have acknowledgment of management.


We support Pole-and-line fisheries when possible as a sustainable option for tuna fisheries. Fisheries supplying bait are identified and have a public assessment. Pole-and-line fisheries have nominal bycatch. However, the fisheries that supply pole-and-line fisheries with bait, can have problematic ecological effects, including bycatch and overexploitation of target baitfish species therefore we support the use of sustainable bait.


1. Source from a FIP

FAD (Fish Aggregating Device):

Current research suggests that harvest methods including the use of FADs (natural or artificial floating objects) might result in a much higher bycatch. Bycatch can include sharks, dolphins, juveniles and sea turtles among others. Therefor we support non-entanglement FAD free tuna, no transshipment at sea w/o observer. We support as much non-entanglement FAD free tuna as possible because FAD tuna may result in bycatch which can include sharks, dolphins, juvenile bigeye tuna and sea turtles among others.

Fishery Improvement Projects (FIPs)/Species/Stock status:

We will support and make a concerted effort to purchase from existing and/or help facilitate new FIPs for species of concern including Albacore, Yellowfin, Bigeye and Skipjack tuna whenever possible.

Observer coverage/ Transparency/Transshipment at sea/ Compliance with fishery closures:

Our program includes sourcing through fisheries whose fishing practices can be maintained without reducing the species ability to populate. The fishery must also be protective of the environment and not adversely impact any other species in the marine ecosystem. This includes accidental kill, removing their food sources, or damaging their environment. Product will be traceable back to its origin/fishing area. This includes traceability back to the boat if wild caught, and back to the farm if farm caught. Suppliers must be able to guarantee the fishing method used. We will provide annual staff training which will result in improved consumer education. We will offer transparency to consumers by way of assuring all products are labeled with species common name, and the country of processing. We support no transshipment at sea without observer coverage and request fishing vessels to be compliant with fishery closures. We request that source fisheries are independently audited for traceability.

Supplier/Vessel identification/ Illegal, Unregulated, Unreported (IUU):

We ask all of our suppliers to provide tuna according to our policy. We support not sourcing from fishing vessels know for IUU and when possible will source from ISSF participant suppliers whenever possible. We request all supplying companies to be in compliance with all of ISSF's Conservation and Management Measures and all supplying vessels are registered on ISSF's Pro-Active Vessel Register (PVR) and to be in full compliance with relevant PVR commitments.

IUU Fishing Vessel List is a list of vessels presumed to have carried out illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing activities. http://iss-foundation.org/2013/06/28/search-an-rfmo-iuu-list/

ISSF participant Suppliers: