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Commercial Fishing



MSC Audits and Assessments Temporarily permitted off-site The Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) is temporarily allowing audits and fishery assessments to be conducted remotely in light of the coronavirus pandemic and in consideration of the welfare of all individuals participating in its certification program.

Audits of sustainable fisheries and businesses would normally be conducted on-site but the virus outbreak has led the organisation to allow independent auditors to conduct assessments remotely where necessary.

Auditors should retain evidence of any restrictions which prevent site visits and maintain a list of certificate holders where remote assessments have been conducted.

This temporary change applies to both fisheries and supply chain organisations with an MSC certificate.

Once the travel restrictions and precautions associated with the coronavirus have been lifted, site visits and audits should be conducted as per regular assessment and audit procedures. The MSC will review this change in requirements at the end of May and monthly thereafter.

The MSC works with auditors globally to assess fishing sustainability and traceability in supply chains that bring sustainable fish and seafood to consumers around the world.

These auditors, who work for independent conformity assessment bodies (CABs), apply the MSC’s scientific standards.

The MSC has advised auditors to use the best available technology. If auditors are unable to fulfil any requirements of the MSC standards remotely, they will record these exceptions.