ASC Chain of Custody Module

How can we be sure that ASC labelled seafood really is from ASC certified farms? Certification doesn’t end at the farm – Chain of Custody (CoC) certification continues along the entire supply chain, and ensures that the ASC label only appears on seafood from certified responsible farms. This is essential because it gives consumers confidence that they can reward good farming practices by choosing the ASC label. ASC has expanded CoC requirements to address emergent issues and better suit the specific nature of farmed seafood.

The new requirements, called the ASC CoC Module, and supporting materials can be found on the ASC Traceability page. 

Introduction to ASC CoC Module:


Full overview of ASC CoC Module:


Review: ASC CoC Module

Since early 2012, ASC has used Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) CoC certification to cover ASC certified product supply chains. This robust system is the leading international standard for seafood segregation and traceability and it covers the entire supply chain, from farm to final sale. ASC and MSC work closely together and have closely related aims, and this will continue.

As the programme continues to grow, ASC is developing a new suite of assurance activities and tools to address emergent issues such as seafood fraud, food safety and use of substances such as antibiotics. This includes additional requirements which are also needed partly due to inherent differences in producing farmed versus wild seafood, such as controlled environments and human-managed inputs. The new requirements aim to reflect global best practice and start to incorporate innovation through use of technology such as digital traceability and product authentication techniques. The efforts are an example of ASC’s commitment to continual improvement, and responding to stakeholder demand.

The additional requirements apply only to ASC Chain of Custody certificate holders, and are in addition to the existing MSC Chain of Custody requirements. The new module has implications for stakeholders, particularly Chain of Custody certificate holders and Certification Assessment Bodies (CABs). However, ASC is working to ensure that impacts are minimised.  These improvements help make the programme more effective and adaptive to new challenges, which will provide increased value and assurance to stakeholders.

As with all changes to the ASC programme, these proposals were subject to public consultation, in line with ASC’s commitment to collaboration and transparency. The public consultation was held  from 8 March to 7 May 2021. The requirements were revised and improved based on the feedback collected from all relevant stakeholders including CABs and certificate holders. A summary report of the consultation feedback and revisions is available here, including an annex of responses here.

Contact person: Wendy Banta, Head of Supply Chain Assurance


More information

[Page last updated on 30.05.2022]

Consultation period:

8 March to 7 May 2021
Status: Closed

Public consultation


FAQ ASC CoC Module: Public Consultation Summary & Proposal (March 2021)

CoC Module - Overview Table of Proposed Changes to Scheme Documents  [added 10.05.2021]

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