Aquaculture and the ‘Blue Revolution’ holds tremendous potential for helping our planet meet the UN Sustainable Development Goals. The importance for being sustainably responsible continues to increase in importance for both customers and consumers. However the topic of sustainability is broad and hard to quantify which is why there is a need for the seafood industry to follow a benchmarking methodology to define and compare “sustainable” and “responsible” practices.
Bertrand Charron, editor and author of SeafoodIntelligence.com and author of the recently released 2017 benchmark report on Salmon Industry Transparency stated, “although our range of benchmarking reports’ covers a broad sector of the seafood and aquaculture industries, we still issue an individual salmon farming and feed benchmark report because this particular industry has historically been under particular media and stakeholders’ scrutiny. I believe this benchmark can benefit not only other salmon and feed companies, but also the global seafood industry which, in general, displays a lesser degree of transparency.”
Being sustainable has become a ‘ticket to trade’ for BioMar and they have increased the sourcing novel raw materials to help drive their sustainability agenda. BioMar was the first feed producer to offer fish feeds containing alternative marine fatty acids sourced from highly sustainable microalgae.
“We take pride in driving the sustainability agenda of the industry and are pleased to be the first feed producer to bring this new feed ingredient to our customers while ensuring economies of scale. We believe AlgaPrime™ DHA will be a significant contributor to the further development of salmon products with a desirable nutritional profile”, said Jan Sverre Røsstad, Vice President and Head of Salmon Division at BioMar Group.
BioMar through its partnership with Aker BioMarine ensure that the krill they source is of the highest quality and harvested sustainably. Aker BioMarines fully transparent value chain has earned then MSC certification and an “A” rating from the Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP).
“Sustainability has always been at the core of BioMar operations however only in recent years have we seen the importance of qualitatively reporting what we have done and what we are planning to do. As being open and transparent is important not only to our customers but is one of our corporate guiding principles”, said CEO Carlos Diaz, BioMar Group.
Bertrand Charron wrote within the report that “many C-executives in the seafood industry would do well to read their [BioMar] report (together with those of a few other sustainability-focused firms) to get inspired and embark upon sustainability reporting!”
BioMar takes a business strategic approach to the topic as they believe a solid sustainability performance is a prerequisite to winning contracts. BioMar also sees that operating sustainably has a positive impact on their employees. “More than one third of BioMar employees have been at the company for over 15 years. This considering we increased our workforce by more than 25% in the last year”, said Carlos Diaz.
The benchmark report states that BioMar has a ‘can and must do’ attitude towards sustainability. Vidar Gundersen, Global Sustainability Director, BioMar Group, explains why this is the case: “It’s actually very simple. If we don’t take care of the oceans, lakes and forests, we won’t have a job tomorrow. In the worst-case scenario, we won’t even have a world to live in. It’s our heritage, it’s our future, and it’s our responsibility”.