Dutch retailer HEMA is now selling seafood from ASC certified farms using the ASC logo in their stores in the Netherlands.
HEMA’s current seafood offerings include ASC certified pangasius fillets and the company has committed to expanding the variety of responsibly certified species available to shoppers in the future.
The ASC programme is comprised of two components. The ASC farm certification is a strict set of standards that ensures seafood is produced in an environmentally and socially responsible manner at the source. The Chain of Custody certification element requires all companies processing certified seafood to have in place traceability systems that ensure no product mixing or substitution can occur.
ASC certification allows retailers to make a credible claim regarding the origin of the responsibly produced seafood they are offering and ensures that the product is fully traceable and, when necessary, segregated from non-certified seafood across the supply chain.
Comprehensive environmental improvement efforts
HEMA has committed to several different certification programmes to ensure that the company offers its customers environmentally and ethically responsible products in multiple categories.
In addition to gaining ASC certification, HEMA sells sustainably caught fish through the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certification scheme. HEMA has also committed to using UTZ certified chocolate and coffee, Fairtrade tea, and paper and wood from Forest Stewardship Council and Rainforest Alliance certified forests.
ASC takes top scores in head to head comparison of seafood labels
HEMA is just one of many retailers in the Netherlands and around the world to commit to selling ASC seafood. Demand for the programme is increasing just as recognition for the ASC from independent agencies is growing.
Newly released research by Dutch NGO Mileu Centraal studied and rated seafood labels, including ASC, on their performance in three categories-ambition for sustainability, transparency and trustworthiness – to ascertain the efficacy and impact of various certification schemes. The ASC took top marks for the overall scheme and achieved the highest scores in applicable individual categories corresponding to strength of environmental assessments, fair trading and social aspects for workers at the farm level, and the assessment process.