So what’s so special about Yellowfin Tuna?
Darden is sourcing Yellowfin Tuna from Anova, a firm owned by Bumblebee Foods, that shares our commitment to sustainability and improving our oceans. In 2010, they announced a Fishery Improvement Project in Indonesia to advance the fishery’s long-term viability and health. Anova calls the program Fishing & LivingTM, an initiative made possible through collaboration with the US Agency for International Development (USAID), the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), local and national governments, and most importantly, the fishermen themselves. Anova began this initiative after an assessment showed declines in amounts of tuna being caught and challenges for Indonesian fisheries to sell their products in the U.S. and Europe given rising demand for more sustainably sourced products.
Sustainability is a core value of Anova’s business, so they began the work of improving the fishery. First, they needed to ensure that the tuna catches did not exceed sustainable levels. To enable this, Anova and its partners created a program called iFish to improve data collection, train government officials in conducting stock assessments, and set up systems to track the health of the fishery. They also began piloting an observer program and created a national database for vessel registration. This FIP is also addressing policies needed to reduce bycatch of sharks, marine turtles and marine birds. Finally, they set standards for fish size and catch limits to enable the fishery to reproduce and rebuild in a timely manner.
Anova also wants to support the rural fishermen who catch Yellowfin Tuna through hand-line fisheries. These small scale tuna fishermen are such an important stakeholder of the fishery but often do not get the opportunity to become involved in decisions made on the management of the resource. Fishing & Living is encouraging the fishermen to form fisher associations, which help the fishers to create a voice with which they can approach the government. The fishermen are also piloting the first Fair Trade USA Capture Fisheries Standards with Yellowfin Tuna, establishing a long-term opportunity for them to impact the development of their communities and the fishery.
Given these tremendous efforts to help preserve Yellowfin Tuna and the livelihoods of the fishermen in Indonesia, we are proud to source Yellowfin Tuna from Anova and look forward to the improved health of the fishery and the lives of the people who depend on it. By partnering with sustainable suppliers, like ANOVA, we can make greater strides in sustainability and seafood stewardship.