In a World first the Australian South Sea Pearl Oyster fishery is certified sustainable against the the Marine Stewardship Council sustainability Standard.
By recognising sustainable management and marine stewardship of wild fisheries, MSC certification enables us to provide our customers with an added assurance, that they are able to buy Australian South Sea pearls with confidence that their pearl has come from a carefully managed and sustainable source, that is cultured in harmony with the natural marine environment with almost zero effect. What is more, MSC certification assists the most discerning of customers in making an ethical choice, a choice that celebrates careful management and marine stewardship.
Australia’s Pinctada maxima fisheries underwent assessment against the MSC standard for close to eighteen months, having completed the initial onsite assessment part of process in November 2015.
The MSC Assessment Report reiterated a lot of what we already knew, it found the Australian Pearl Oyster Fishery met or exceeded all the marine environmental and sustainability performance indicators. In short, The MSC ecolabel enables us to readily communicate to our customers that their pearl came from a wild fishery operating to the highest standards of environmental and sustainability management.
The Marine Stewardship Council Standard
The Marine Stewardship Council’s (MSC) Standard (considered the global gold standard) is an internationally accredited, robust and independent standard, against which the sustainability and environmental management of a wild marine resource is assessed.
The MSC standard, which is rigorous and evidence based, is based on a scientific process, required the assessment of the performance of the wild Pinctada maxima Pearl Oyster Fishery with respect to on three principles:
There are three core principles that every fishery must meet:
Principle 1 – Sustainable Fish Stocks: Fishing Activity must be at a level to ensure that fishing can continue indefinitely [demonstrable sustainable and responsible management of a wild marine resource],
Principle 2 – Minimising environmental impact: Fishery Operations must be managed to maintain the structure, productivity, function and diversity of the ecosystem [demonstrable sustainable and responsible management of the marine habitats, ecosystems, protected species and marine environment of Pinctada maxima generally], &
Principle 3 – Effective management: The fishery must comply with relevant laws and have a management system that is responsive to changing circumstances [demonstrable Industry and Governmental management and governance systems that ensures a sustainably managed Pinctada maxima resource]
To determine if each principle is met, the MSC Fisheries Standard comprises 28 evidence based performance indicators. These are used by independent conformity assessment bodies to score the fishery.