Indonesias eastern archipelago is part of Southeast Asias Coral Triangle, one of the worlds most biodiverse marine ecosystems. It is a gem to be preserved. Indonesia is also the home of a growing and globally significant fisheries sector, providing jobs to 2.2 million people and resulting in annual exports of over $3 billion USD.
North Atlantic Inc. (NAI) and subsidiary PT Bali Seafood International (BSI) are part of a network of organizations invested in the health of this region. Since 2009, NAI-BSI have been building the foundation for a commercially sponsored approach to fisheries in Indonesia. NAI-BSIs incentive-driven model aims to change the conversation about what fishery management can look like to achieve enduring gains in sustainability and lasting improvements in the livelihoods of fishers and their families.
Today, Indonesian fishers are incentivized to keep everything they catch, which contributes to the overfishing threatening Indonesias fish stocks. Fish aggregators will take the full load, often without paying market-related prices and without discriminating between species and fish maturity. Even after accepting the whole catch, these middlemen may delay payments to fishers. The goal of NAI-BSI is to develop an alternative model that replaces this behavior.
Key to this effort are 4 new fishery community centers being built in artisanal fishing communities through the Lesser Sunda Islands that will facilitate direct integration of the supply chain with fisheries management and on-the-water behavior. The first of these centers is under construction on Sumbawa Island given a $2.1 million USD backing from impact investor Aavishkaar. It has an expected completion date of summer 2017.
Each center will incorporate multiple services for fishermen, including processing equipment, gear shops, cold storage capabilities, educational and technological centers, micro-finance offices, and fishery management capacity. Building these centers directly in the artisanal communities will allow fish caught and landed by these fishermen to be processed immediately, producing higher quality fish and reducing the supply chain waste that occurs now given the need to transport catch to larger cities for processing.
BSI is committed to adopting a pay-for-grade system that pays premiums to fishermen for this higher-quality catch, incentivizing more fishermen to operate through the community centers and adopt the responsible fishing practices required by BSI, including gear restrictions and data collection.
Over time, this system is expected to realize environmental, social, and economic benefits. Pay-for-grade will exclude immature fish, reducing risks for overfishing. Further, BSI will pay fishermen within 24 hours, improving livelihoods from the current situation where payment from aggregators may take days or weeks. Finally, small-scale fishermen will be able to produce the higher quality catch demanded for export, facilitating access to these lucrative markets.
In addition to this commercially sponsored fisheries management model, NAI-BSI is working in tandem with several partners on fishery improvement projects (FIPs) and traceability pilot projects in the region. We are committed to supporting the UN Sustainable Development goals by implementing leading business practices that result in efficient supply chains, transparent and traceable sourcing, positive social impact, and resilient oceans.
Updates to voluntary commitment
Build up to 4 private sector-funded fisheries centers to support management and use of defined nearshore fisheries in the eastern archipelago of Indonesia, which will benefit up to an estimated 26,000 fishers and families in artisanal communities once fully operational
Develop, trial, and scale a prototype private sector-led investment model for socially responsible and sustainable fisheries management and use
Collect data from each vessel in our supply chain (either through passive tracking units or e-log catch documentation) and utilize data to: 1) support real-time stock assessment, fishery controls, and community-based enforcement, and 2) guarantee no illegal, unreported, or unregulated fishing
Re-engineer the seafood supply chain to eliminate the estimated 40-60% waste in product value inherent to the current system