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Alaska salmon fishery. (Phot Credit: YouTube/steveoscaro)

Independent adjudicator dismisses Alaska salmon fishery objection

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Thursday, November 07, 2013, 23:00 (GMT + 9)

An Independent Adjudicator (IA) has dismissed an objection to the proposed certification of the Alaska salmon fishery to the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) standard. Under the MSC Objections Procedure, the objectors now have an option to submit a new or amended notice within five working days, by 12 November 2013.

The objection procedure does not permit the MSC to release details of any objection that is either provisionally or finally dismissed.

On 30 October, four NGOs from the US and Canada filed an objection over the Final Determination Report by Intertek Moody Marine (IMM), which reached the conclusion that 13 out of the 14 certification units were fit for the conditions set in the MSC standard. The 14th unit, Prince William Sound, is still under assessment.

Wild Fish Conservancy based in Washington state and Watershed Watch Salmon Society, Skeena Wild Conservation Trust, and Raincoast Conservation Foundation, all based in British Columbia, Canada, claimed that Alaskan fishermen intercept too many salmon from endangered populations as the fish migrate through Alaskan waters on their way to spawning grounds in British Columbia and the continental US.

"The Alaskans are good at not overfishing their own wild salmon runs and we'd just like to see them extend the same conservation ethic to some of these salmon runs in BC, Washington, and Oregon that are in serious trouble," pointed out Kurt Beardslee, of the Wild Fish Conservancy.

The MSC process includes an objections procedure as a final optional step in an assessment to provide an orderly, structured, transparent and independent process by which objections to the Final Report and Determination of a Certifier can be resolved. 

The purpose of the Objections Procedure is not to review the subject fishery against the MSC Principles and Criteria for Sustainable Fishing, but to determine whether the Conformity Assessment Body (CAB) made an error of procedure or scoring that materially affected the outcome of its determination. An Independent Adjudicator examines the claims made by an objector and determines whether the CAB made an error that materially affected the outcome to inform their decision of whether to dismiss or accept an objection.

Related articles:

- Prospective Alaska salmon fishery certification objected to by conservationists
Most of Alaska salmon will not be sold as MSC certified, ASMI clarifies
Alaskan salmon fishery close to achieving MSC certification



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