August 2015, Bali, Indonesia
The Ambassador of the United States to Indonesia (Robert Blake), the Consul General (Heather Variava) and their team visited Anova/Fishing & Living and MDPI to learn about their work towards sustainable fisheries in Indonesia. Since he took office, Ambassador Blake has expressed a strong interest in fisheries and initiatives that contribute to their sustainable development. Small-scale fisheries, such as the ones Anova and MDPI are working with in Indonesia, are especially relevant as these employ 7.3 million people and represent 80% of the fish production in Indonesia. Blane Olson, Director of Technical Services, explained how sustainability and responsible sourcing a core business values to Anova. Through its Fishing & Living initiative, Anova has been actively supporting the Indonesian Handline Fishery Improvement Project (FIP) since 2009 through ground activities such as port sampling, logbook socialization, sustainability awareness and supply chain engagement. Anova is also the market access partner for the 1st Fair Trade certification for capture fisheries, delivering the 1st Fair Trade tuna to the market, worldwide. Helen Packer (Fishing & Living), Momo Kochen (MDPI Programs and Science Director) and Aditya (MDPI Executive Director) delivered presentations about the importance of private sector engagement and collaboration in supporting fisheries sustainability, striving fishing communities and eco-certification such as Marine Stewardship Council and Fair Trade. Robert Tjoanda, President of Harta Samudra, gave an overview of Fair Trade and how the program has already greatly improved the lives of fishermen through the collection of the Fair Trade premium for community development projects such as water supply infrastructure, waste disposal, first aid kit and life jackets.
Impressed with these efforts, Ambassador Blake suggested to follow-up with the Minister of Fisheries of Indonesia (Susi Pudjiastuti) to further discuss these programs and opportunities for collaboration in improving small-scale fishing communities through sustainable fisheries and social development.
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