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December 12, 2010

Don't Trust Those Fishy Certificates

REYKJAVIK, Dec 3, 2010 - New eco-labels on Icelandic seafood are misleading and unregulated, concealing practices that damage the environment, critics say.

Increasingly, Icelandic fishing companies are focusing their attention on foreign markets. In order to appeal to eco-conscious consumers abroad, many of these corporations are introducing labels that guarantee their products as "certified responsible seafood". 

However, critics claim that these labels obscure the truth of the fishing industry in Iceland, which relies on over-fishing and ecologically damaging practices to meet demand for profit. 

One problem with the new labeling system is that it doesn’t rely on any objective criteria for certification - individual companies are responsible for certifying their own products as ecologically friendly without having to meet any specific standards. This has resulted in an array of labels for all types of fish. 

Icelandic cod, for example, can be certified as eco-friendly in a variety of ways. 

Finnur Gardarsson, a member of the Fisheries Association of Iceland, told IPS that Icelandic cod fisheries are being evaluated by Global Trust Certification, an "independent, accredited, third-party certification body" based in Ireland that will complete the certification process within the next few weeks, labeling the cod 'Iceland responsible fisheries – certified'. 

.... read the rest of this interesting article here at the IPS News

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