The traceability system prevents illegal seafood from entering the EU

The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) has urged EU member states to develop a fully digital traceability system to prevent illegally-sourced seafood from reaching the market.

According to Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP), the call from WWF is made when the EU is considering the rules for traceability of seafood as part of a revised version of the fisheries control system.

In early April 2021, the European Parliament voted for measures towards more transparent fisheries and traceable seafood.

Accordingly, all EU fishing vessels are required to have equipment to track their location and report everything they catch. Seafood products would need to be digitally traceable from the point of catch to the point of retail.

According to WWF, 60% of seafood consumed in the EU is imported mainly from developing countries. In particular, some seafood is caught illegally, overexploited and from places that are negatively affected by the warming of the ocean water.

Therefore, WWF emphasized on the need to prevent illegally sourced seafood products from entering the EU markets and products of unsustainable origin from being mixed into the supply chain.

Meanwhile, the fisheries sector and policymakers exchanged views on improving traceability in fisheries in the EU market during an event hosted by WWF and the Environmental Justice Foundation.

The European Commission is proposing to completely digitize all data in the world fisheries and the entire supply chain, as well as track individual catches of fish being sold in markets.