Report delves into ‘unseen journey’ of SA’s seafood before World Oceans Day

by kaml1128521154

How much do you know about the grilled or fried hake fillet you’re about to tuck into at your favourite restaurant? And do you know how far that tin of pilchards travelled before reaching the shelf at your favourite supermarket?

A new report titled The hidden cost of your seafood looks into the traceability of products sold at South African supermarkets and restaurants and comes a day before the world marks World Oceans Day.

The ninth edition of the WWF-Sassi retailer/supplier participation scheme report also “focuses on progress made by South Africa’s top seafood vendors that have been working towards a sustainable seafood supply chain”.

In the report, traceability refers to the “ability to identify, track and trace the origin and full extent of a product’s journey” and it found the seafood sold to the public has often travelled “further than the end consumer will travel in their lifetime”.

Elaborating on this, behaviour change lead and WWF-Sassi manager for WWF SA Pavitray Pillay said: “One of the most challenging sectors for traceability implementation within supply chains is the seafood industry.

“Some of those challenges include discrepancies when recording data at sea, difficulties identifying species to a common and species level [and] language barriers in documentation as the product travels around the world to different processing facilities.”

The report looked at the “unseen journey” South Africa’s seafood takes before reaching the end user, specifically focusing on the two most common products: sardines or pilchards, and hake.

With regards to the first, the report showed 80% of the sardines consumed are caught and imported from Morocco, while 20% are caught along South Africa’s southwest and south coasts.

Hake is caught off South Africa’s southwest coast and 33% is sold locally while the remaining 67% is exported, mainly to Europe.

“Seafood supply chains have varying journeys across the world. Each species’ journey is dictated by where it is caught, which country it is destined for and what the ‘end product’ will be, such as fresh, frozen, filleted, tinned or processed into other products.

“Some supply chains are short — the fish is caught, sold to a local shop or restaurant and sold to the seafood lover who eats it. Some are more complex,” the report said.

It also looked at the progress some of South Africa’s most well-known retailers and restaurants made in terms of the species and volume they procured in 2023, how many of the species they stock have a “sustainability certification”, their notable achievements from their biannual organisational assessments and their progress since joining the WWF/Sassi scheme.

Member retailers include the Shoprite group, Pick n Pay, Food Lover’s Market, Spar, Atlantis Food and Woolworths, and restaurants such as Ocean Basket and John Dory’s.

Among the supermarkets, Woolworths ranked the highest, in progress made with species and volume.

In the first, it achieved 87% in the sustainability criteria, while 2% was under improvement and 11% not yet making commitments. 

In volume, the retailer met 95% of the sustainability criteria while only 5% is yet to make commitments.

In second place was Pick n Pay, with progress by species showing 66% met the sustainability criteria, 13% being under improvement and 21% yet to make commitments.

Progress by volume showed the retailer scored the second lowest, with 23% meeting the sustainability criteria, 26% under improvement and 51% yet to make commitments.

The Shoprite and Spar groups, Food Lover’s Market and Atlantis Foods scored in the 50s in progress made by species but showed a mixed bag of results with progress made by volume. 

Among the member restaurants, John Dory’s edged Ocean Basket in both categories of progress made by species and volume.

John Dory’s’ progress by species showed 81% meets the sustainability criteria while 19% have not yet made commitments. In progress made by volume, 78% meets the sustainability criteria while 22% is yet to make commitments.

Ocean Basket scored 79% in the progress made by species category and 57% in progress made by volume.

TimesLIVE

You may also like

Leave a Comment

multipurpose site for ROV ,drone services,mineral ores,ingots,agro commodities-oils,pulses,fatty acid distillate,rice,tomato concentrate,animal waste -gallstones,maggot feed ,general purpose niche -consumer goods,consumer electronics and all .Compedium of news around the world,businesses,ecommerce ,mineral,machines promotion and affiliation and just name it ...
multipurpose site for ROV ,drone services,mineral ores,ingots,agro commodities-oils,pulses,fatty acid distillate,rice,tomato concentrate,animal waste -gallstones,maggot feed ,general purpose niche -consumer goods,consumer electronics and all .Compedium of news around the world,businesses,ecommerce ,mineral,machines promotion and affiliation and just name it ...

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More

Privacy & Cookies Policy