MarinTrust says the next version of its chain of custody certification scheme for seafood and other marine products will include a clause covering the use of blockchain.

The incorporation of blockchain into the standard could help prevent materials from illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing entering the supply chain, says the organisation – formerly known as IFFO RS – and could reduce wastage and increase the market value of raw materials such as by-products.

One of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) is to ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns (SDG target 12), but the SOFIA report published this year by the agency’s Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) says that around a third (35 per cent) of the global harvest of 179m tonnes is either lost or wasted every year in fisheries and aquaculture.

Version 2.0 of the MarinTrust standard will be published this month or in August, it says. The first version of the chain of custody certification was published in 2010, and the standard is now used to certify more than half of all marine products traded in world markets.

The new version will “kickstart the implementation of an innovative way to demonstrate full traceability back to the origin,” says MarinTrust, which notes that it has already been It has been road-tested at feed manufacturers, oil refiners, storage facilities and traders in China, Thailand, Peru and Chile.

The standard covers the verification and certification of producer factories that source raw material from approved fisheries and by-product fisheries, or by-product from aquaculture, as well as marine ingredient products coming from identity preserved (IP) supply chains.

Moving towards the adoption of blockchain networks “now seems highly relevant,” according to MarinTrust – provided the system follows the following parameters:

  • It must be open and democratic, through an accessible database using no intermediary, allowing downstream companies to access Key Data Elements (KDEs) such as the area of fishing, names of caught species, processing location, sustainability credentials or certifications, production method, etc;
  • It must ensure transparency, allowing access to every transaction and its respective value; and
  • It guarantees irreversibility of records.



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