The Soil Association’s organic fish farming standards scored 90 percent, and took top place in a World Wildlife Fund (WWF) study of 24 international aquaculture certification schemes, the U.K. environmental charity said Wednesday . The WWF study analysed existing certification programs against criteria that the wildlife organization believes are important to achieve sustainability and credibility in the aquaculture sector.
Four key issues were examined: the environment, social issues, animal welfare, and the standard setting and certification process. Of the 24 aquaculture standards examined, 17 were selected for the benchmarking study. Ten organic standards were included in the study and gave the top ten scores.
The Soil Association is particularly concerned with developing high standards for salmon and trout in the United Kingdom, according to Peter Bridson, the Soil Association’s Aquaculture Program manager. “Despite having the highest score, the report still highlights areas for further improvement,” Bridson said, adding that some goals have been achieved since the report was drafted. The study is available on WWF’s Web site.