First ASC certified shrimp from Asia set to hit the market soon
Quoc Viet is the first Asian shrimp farm to announce Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) certification following assessment against the ASC Shrimp Standard.
The family business, which started in 1996, was the first shrimp farm to enter the ASC programme.
Ngo Quoc Tuan, Vice President of Quoc Viet, said: "Our family understands the importance of managing our farm systems well and making sure we care for our local environment, people and community - responsible practice and maintaining high standards have never been a choice for us, you have to do it the right way.
"For us, gaining ASC certification reinforces to others that we do manage our business responsibly. It's also makes good business sense; ASC certification gives you market entry that offers new opportunities. And, our customers now have the confidence that the shrimp they buy from us comes from a farm that meets the most rigorous global criteria for responsible farm production."
Chris Ninnes, ASC's CEO said: "I would like to extend my congratulations to Quoc Viet for their tremendous achievement. It's quite a step to have the first Asian certified shrimp now available. Vietnam is the third biggest exporter of farmed shrimp globally, with around 90 per cent of its total volume exported.
"The global market for farmed shrimp is strong so it is increasingly important to engage the markets to promote responsible shrimp production. Aquaculture can meet the increasing demands but it must - and can - be done responsibly."
Quoc Viet supplied 15,000mt of shrimp in 2013 with a target of 20,000mt in 2014. The business is currently in the process of expanding its plant to scale up production to 25,000mt by 2015. Quoc Viet supplies customers across the US, Japan, EU, Australia, Canada, Korea and other countries.
Working together to make a difference
Quoc Viet has been working with WWF Vietnam to support local small scale shrimp farms who also aim to achieve ASC certification. The WWF project helps farmers to improve their operations and capacity to achieve ASC certification. IDH is working in partnership with WWF Vietnam to support Quoc Viet and the small scale farmers.
The farms are rewarded when they are linked to companies in the market that value ASC certification and this in turn encourages more farms to improve their operations and reduce their environmental and social impacts.
ASC Shrimp Standard
Shrimp farms have been able to enter ASC assessment since the shrimp standard and audit manual were finalised in March 2014.
Through ASC certification, shrimp farms aim to measurably reduce adverse impacts on the environment and local communities by preserving wetlands and mangroves; addressing the transfer of viruses and reducing disease; bringing cleaner water and ensuring the responsible use of water; ensuring the responsible use of feed; and addressing biodiversity issues.
IDH FIT Fund
IDH established a Farmers in Transition (FIT) fund to support the production of responsibly farmed shrimp. With the help of the programme, IDH enters in partnership with other organisations and companies to encourage and educate smaller scale producers on responsible aquaculture.
For example, the programme partners with retail, food service and supply chain companies to support producers in improving their farming practice and actively engages governments, industry and other stakeholders in the countries of production.
Shrimp farmers who would like to achieve ASC certification can apply for FIT co-funding from IDH.