For the second year, the Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) and the Sustainable Shrimp Partnership (SSP) joined forces to host a successful ASC Shrimp Summit on 12-14 June 2023 in Guayaquil, Ecuador. Designed to demonstrate increasing global demand for ASC certified products and showcase the commitment of Ecuadorian shrimp producers to comply with the highest standards, the summit provided on-the-ground insights and new commercial possibilities.
Shrimp buyers from the USA, Japan, the UK, France, Germany, Spain and Portugal – key ASC markets – representing retailers including Sam’s Club, Foodbuy, Groupe Casino, Brakes, Aldi Süd, Sonae, Aeon and Coop were in attendance.
They benefited from a full programme of events designed to present to them the opportunities around ASC certified Ecuadorian shrimp. ASC buyers visited SSP members’ facilities, which included ASC certified farms and processing plants, to witness responsible aquaculture production in action and speak with the people directly involved in these operations.
Hayette Djellouli, Buyer at Groupe Casino, said “This trip helped me become aware of the importance of the shrimp industry in Ecuador… Particularly when it comes to the processes required to ensure responsible aquaculture, notably in terms of husbandry practices, marine ecosystems protection, and the ever-present social dimension of aquaculture.”
Anthony Snow, Seafood Director at Albertsons Companies, commented “My experience visiting processing plants in Ecuador was great. We got to see a lot of further processing and value-added capabilities.”
Marcos Moya, Global Outreach Lead at ASC, said “We are delighted to have brought together buyers from all over the world to engage with Ecuadorian shrimp producers who are meeting ASC’s highest standards. At ASC we are determined to match growing global demand for certified shrimp with responsible supply. We are excited about the new opportunities that this summit has created and look forward to supporting these new relationships”.
Furthermore, Pamela Nath, Director of SSP, emphasised that the summit was an excellent platform for visitors to witness firsthand the special focus that SSP members have on quality, food safety, and responsible production. “Our guests experienced the commitment of SSP members with sustainability, their constant ability to innovate and not only meet market demands, but also exceed expectations.”
The export possibilities in the Ecuadorean shrimp market are considerable – with the country already the world’s largest shrimp producer and exporter of Pacific white shrimp (P. Vannamei) to Europe, China and the US. In 2022, Ecuador exported more than 1 million MT of shrimp, reaching 66 countries, and adding $6.7 billion worth of exports to the country’s economy. Ecuador produces approximately 40% of ASC certified shrimp globally.
ASC looks forward to expanding these commercial visits to other producer countries with relevant ASC supply in future.
About the ASC
The ASC is the world’s leading certification scheme for farmed seafood, from farm to fork. To drive our third party certification and labelling programme for seafood farming worldwide, we work with the environmental and scientific community and beyond. Together, we develop standards with other NGOs, academics, farmers, retailers and experts. And we keep developing more standards to meet changing market needs and demand.
ASC certified farms are independently assessed against every requirement in their species-specific ASC standard. Our system has been evaluated against ISEAL’s Codes of Good Practice, a globally-recognised framework for effective, credible sustainability systems.