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New Consortium tackles human rights risks within global seafood supply chains

Three leading organisations focused on equitable, responsible sourcing are joining forces to equip the seafood sector with tools and resources to evaluate human rights and labour risks.

Arlington, Virginia (Nov. 28, 2023) – Conservation International, LRQA, and FishWise today announced the formation of the Consortium for Social Risks in Seafood. With support from the Walton Family Foundation and the Walmart Foundation, this first-of-its-kind partnership will offer credible guidance on how to assess human rights and labour issues across the seafood supply chain, a critical first step in charting a path for improvement.

Consortium members have been working together for the past two years to make this initiative a reality. Central to their work has been the advancement and implementation of the Social Responsibility Assessment Tool (SRA), a widely applicable methodology that enables users to identify and assess social risks in fisheries.

The Consortium’s work over the next two years will involve fine-tuning the SRA and updating to the Roadmap to Improve Seafood Ethics (RISE) platform, which provides guidance and resources on human rights due diligence targeted at different levels of the seafood supply chain. This work will include the creation of a new Advisory Committee and engaging directly with fishworkers, their representatives, human and labour rights groups, and the seafood industry via in-person and virtual workshops. The group will also be analysing the potential integration of social and environmental risk data into a customised seafood platform to enable data-driven decision-making amongst seafood businesses.

“Action must be rooted in quality data and amplified worker participation and agency. With this agreement, we’re bringing together our unique expertise to deliver actionable and scalable guidance for the seafood industry on how to implement effective human rights due diligence,” said Kelley Bell, the Social Responsibility Division Director at FishWise.

Half of the companies assessed by the World Benchmarking Alliance’s Seafood Sustainability Index, an initiative to benchmark seafood companies’ social and environmental impacts aligned with the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, have little to no commitment to protect human rights in their operations and supply chains.

With new human rights due diligence legislation emerging around the world, there is an urgency to gain visibility and better understand social risks in seafood supply chains.

Ashley Apel

Seafood Partnerships Manager, Conservation International

“Seafood companies are performing poorly on critical human and labour rights issues,” said Ashley Apel, Seafood Partnerships Manager at Conservation International. “With new human rights due diligence legislation emerging around the world, there is an urgency to gain visibility and better understand social risks in seafood supply chains.”

“Fundamentally, the Consortium aims to improve the conditions and wellbeing of fishers, farmers, and workers in seafood supply chains, promote decent work, and empower companies to manage their social risks,” said Meghan Quinlan, Vice President of Food and Agriculture at lead global assurance partner, LRQA.

Fundamentally, the Consortium aims to improve the conditions and wellbeing of fishers, farmers, and workers in seafood supply chains.

Meghan Quinlan

Vice President of Food and Agriculture , LRQA

Additional initiatives will include the implementation of social risk assessments and actionable recommendations for how the sustainable seafood movement can better incorporate social risk data into decision-making. The Consortium will be hosting a webinar to showcase how LRQA’s risk data platform, EiQ, could be expanded and customised for the seafood sector.

Learn more and register for the date that suits your schedule:


About Conservation International: Conservation International protects nature for the benefit of humanity. Through science, policy, fieldwork and finance, we spotlight and secure the most important places in nature for the climate, for biodiversity and for people. With offices in 30 countries and projects in more than 100 countries, Conservation International partners with governments, companies, civil society, Indigenous peoples and local communities to help people and nature thrive together. Go to Conservation.org to learn more. 

About LRQA: LRQA is a leading global assurance partner, bringing together decades of unrivalled expertise in assessment, advisory, inspection and cybersecurity services – underpinned by data-driven insights – to help its clients navigate a new era of risk.
Operating in more than 160 countries with a team of more than 6,000 people, LRQA’s award-winning compliance, supply chain, cybersecurity and ESG specialists help more than 61,000 clients across almost every sector to anticipate, mitigate and manage risk wherever they operate.

About FishWise: FishWise is a non-profit sustainable seafood consultancy whose mission is to sustain ocean ecosystems and the people who depend on them by transforming global seafood supply chains. We take a holistic approach to sustainability, founded on the idea that solutions for seafood issues exist where environmental protection and social justice converge. FishWise operates across three strategic pathways: direct supply chain engagement, collective industry engagement, and governance reform. Our work is powered by data, equipping businesses and a diverse community of collaborators to lead the transition to a sustainable, ethically responsible seafood industry. Go to FishWise.org for more information. 

About Philanthropy at Walmart: Walmart.org represents the philanthropic efforts of Walmart and the Walmart Foundation. By focusing where the business has unique strengths, Walmart.org works to tackle key social and environmental issues and collaborate with others to spark long-lasting systemic change. Walmart has stores in 24 countries, employs more than 2 million associates and does business with thousands of suppliers who, in turn, employ millions of people. Walmart.org is helping people live better by supporting programs to accelerate upward job mobility for frontline workers, advance equity, address hunger, build inclusive economic opportunity for people in supply chains, protect and restore nature, reduce waste and emissions, and build strong communities where Walmart operates. Visit Walmart.org to learn more.

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