Fishery Improvement Project (FIP)- Mexico Grouper Fishery
Since September 2013, Sea Delight has engaged its supplier and stakeholders to develop and support a Fishery Improvement Project for the Grouper Fishery in Mexico.
The fisheries for grouper are located in the Campeche Bank off the northeast coast of the Yucatan Peninsula (main ports constitute Progreso, Celestun, Sisal, Rio Lagartos, San Felipe and El Cuyo). The Mexican grouper fishery is characterized by two types of fleets: mechanical longline and hand longline. These two fleets are often referred to as the "major or technified" fleet, represented by larger offshore vessels, and the "minor or artisanal" fleet, characterized by small hand longline vessels called "lanchas." We believe this project will pave the way to working with other industry leaders that may have similar projects in Mexico and who may be open in the future to unite efforts so that the FIP can expand to a regional program under the leadership of the industry.
Project Highlights include:
- Partner with the Centre for Development and Sustainable Fisheries (CeDePesca), a non-profit Civil Association founded in Mar del Plata city, Argentina, in 1997. It has the mission of working towards socially, economically and ecologically sustainable fisheries.
- November 2013, Sea Pact awarded a grant to Sea Delight to support Mexican Grouper Fishery Improvement Project
- December 2013, Sustainable Fisheries Fund, a program by Resources Legacy Fund, awarded a grant to Sea Delight to support Mexican Grouper Fishery Improvement Project over 2 year period.
- March 2014, scheduled visit to the grouper fishery for MSC pre-assessment, which will be conducted by Intertek Fisheries Certification, LTD, a leading certifier of fisheries against the MSC standard
- Between July and September of 2015, several local committees were formed to review fishing vessel permits and registered fishermen in major coastal communities to assess fishing effort.
- On September 8th and 9th, 2015 the state government and FAO held a workshop to analyze and validate specific actions to be included in the document: “Plan Rector de la Pesca y Acuacultura del estado de Yucatan”.
- In the last quarter of 2015, “Fisheries Management Nautical Committees” (Comités Nauticos de Ordenamiento Pesquero) were established in Sisal, Progreso, Chelem, Telchac and other coastal communities to validate and update the census of fishermen.
- From January through March 2016, recently published ruling documents created an opportunity for official discussions regarding effective management strategies, including a quota-per-fleet system, in order to regulate fishing effort.
- Between February and April 2016, Handy International, Chefs Trading, Quirch Foods, and Pescados y Mariscos del Caribe (PESMAR) became official FIP participants. An updated Framework Collaboration Agreement and Addendums were signed to this effect, as well as a Specific Agreements for each new participant for 2016.
The Sea Delight Ocean Fund supports this project by providing necessary funding and coordinating efforts with CeDePesca's local office in Mexico. Industry engagement is also the cornerstone of our work and we are always looking to work with like-minded industry leaders who source from this fishery and want to be active participants in the FIP process.
Additional information and quarterly updates are also available in the CeDePesca's website.