Busy in Brussels: GAA, BAP Highlights from Seafood Expo Global
Held at the Brussels Expo, Seafood Expo Global is the world’s largest seafood exposition. This year, the three-day event drew 1,946 exhibiting companies from 78 countries, according to the event organizer, with more than 28,500 seafood professionals in attendance. GAA exhibited in Hall 7, Stand 1405.
GAA made quite a splash at this year’s event with the launch of a new, independent not-for-profit organization, Global Seafood Assurances, established to meet marketplace and public expectations for assurances across the board in aquaculture and fisheries. The announcement came at an April 25 luncheon hosted by GAA and sponsored by SeafoodSource.com.
Outgoing GAA Executive Director and incoming GSA Executive Director Wally Stevens presents the Global Seafood Assurances concept to a room packed with about 120 seafood professional in Brussels. “The intention is to provide credible assurances for both wild and farmed seafood to the marketplace and consumers that show that seafood is responsibly grown or sustainably harvested. It is not a new standards program,” said Stevens.
Global Seafood Assurances has already begun to address a major gap in fisheries certification by signing a memorandum of understanding with Seafish (the United Kingdom’s Sea Fish Industry Authority) on April 24 to manage its Responsible Fisheries Scheme (RFS) in the UK. GSA will also work with other fisheries stakeholders around the world to develop new vessel standards for social responsibility.
In its exhibit on April 25, GAA recognized JD.com, China’s largest retailer, and its JD Fresh division for upping its commitment to the Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) certification program. JD Fresh pledged that by 2020 50 percent of its farmed seafood supply by volume will be at least two-star BAP certified and that more than 80 percent of its private label farmed seafood offerings will be at least two-star BAP certified. At a brief ceremony, GAA Executive Director Wally Stevens recognized Jary Hu, seafood general manager for JD Fresh.
JD.com and GAA initially signed an MOU at the Seafood Expo North America in 2017 to begin cooperating by offering BAP seafood products to JD.com’s customers via its fresh food platform, JD Fresh.
On April 24, GAA and Tmall Fresh held a meeting about e-commerce’s role in the Chinese marketplace. Tmall Fresh shared its insights into the behaviors and characteristics of China seafood consumers and answered questions about the various e-commerce models. Picture from left to right are Lili Zhang, Tmall fresh seafood category manager; Jack Connelly, Tmall Fresh seafood category manager; Steve Hart, GAA VP; Joanna Zheng, Tmall Fresh merchandizing general manager; Jane Bi, BAP market development manager for Asia; and Power He, Yiguo Fresh seafood supply chain general manager.
On April 24, Mike Berthet, Best Aquaculture Practices market development manager for Europe, honored Luckyfish Co. of Turkey for becoming the world’s first company eligible to offer four-star BAP Mediterranean sea bass and sea bream. Berthet presented Luckyfish CEO Ismail Aksoy with the company’s BAP certificates.
The 2019 edition of Seafood Expo Global will take place from May 7 to 9. We hope to see you there!
Once again this year, the Global Aquaculture Alliance (GAA) exhibited at Seafood Expo Global (SEG) in Brussels, Belgium.