Bristol Seafood Scallops Get Fair Trade Certification
Portland, Maine-based Bristol Seafood announced on March 15 that its range of North Atlantic Sea Scallops is the first seafood sourced from United States waters to receive Fair Trade Certified status. Product distribution in retail packaging bearing the Fair Trade seal is expected to reach store shelves on the east and west coasts in April.
“We are very proud to be the first to introduce Fair Trade Certified seafood harvested in the United States,” said Peter Handy, president and ceo of Bristol Seafood. “All of our products are based on integrity and sustainable practices, and Fair Trade certification gives our customers third-party validation that we operate in a socially responsible manner as well.”
Similar to other Fair Trade Certified product categories like coffee, tea, cocoa, produce, apparel and coconut, domestic Fair Trade seafood certification requires fishermen to source and trade according to rigorous, independently audited standards. These standards help to protect fundamental human rights, prevent forced employment and child labor, establish safe working conditions, and protect the environment.
“The certification is very exciting for us,” said Julie Kuchepatov, Fair Trade USA’s seafood director. “Fair Trade will empower scallop fishermen to contribute to the social and environmental well-being of the fishery while also earning premium to invest in the larger community. We look forward to working with Bristol in the future to bring the benefits of Fair Trade to even more fishermen.”
Founded in 1992, Bristol Seafood shipped more than six million pounds of seafood last year. The company is the only processor of mussels, scallops or fillets in the state of Maine to earn a Safe Quality Food Institute certification.