Artisan Catch to Launch Blue Crab Fishery Improvement Project in Mexico’s Gulf of California

Merida, Yucatan, MX – Artisan Catch, formerly Orca Seafoods S.A. De C.V, a leading advocate of the seafood sustainability in Mexico, in collaboration with Comunidad y Biodiversidad (COBI), has announced today the start of a comprehensive fishery improvement program (FIP) for the blue crab fishery in the states of Sinaloa and Sonora.

The FIP tasks will be carried out by CeDePesca with the preliminary stage beginning in the month of July 2019. The preliminary stage will allow for the design of a comprehensive improvement project that includes an analysis of the existing pre-assessment of the fishery with the available documentation, the design of an Action Plan to get to a level of performance to be certifiable by the MSC standard for sustainable fisheries, and the prioritization of actions and tasks to move to Stage Two where the workplan will be finalized.

Managing Director of Artisan Catch Mauricio Orellana said, “The Gulf of California small-scale crab fishery is rich with tradition and culture with over 5,000 artisan fishermen dependent on this blue crab fishery for their livelihood. After observing over-exploitation of this fishery in other parts of the world, we felt it was imperative to be proactive in implementing initiatives to ensure the sustainable future of blue crab in this region. Our hope is through our leadership in this FIP, it will strengthen and protect these indigenous fishing communities who depend on this important fishery.”

About the Mexican Crab Fishery:
The Mexican swimming crab fishery is an important export market representing USD $30.5M in 2014. The Mexican swimming crab fishery has grown at an annual rate of 5.35% in the last 10-years and is of great importance to small-scale fisherman. According to Conapesca, Mexico’s National Commission on Aquaculture and Fisheries, the blue crab fishery represents more than 5,100 small-scale fishers in the states of Sinaloa and Sonora where crab is a prime source of income.

About Comunidad y Biodiversidad (COBI):
Community and Biodiversity (COBI in Spanish) is a Mexican civil society organization founded in 1999 with the goal of saving marine ecosystems that are deteriorating due to unsustainable exploitation of natural resources. The COBI mission is to preserve the oceans and encourage the sustainable use of its resources.

About CeDePesca:
CeDePesca is a nonprofit organization founded in 1997 with the goal of helping Latin American fisheries attain sustainability. Today, CeDePesca has expanded into the Caribbean and is working together with stakeholders in Mexico, Guatemala, Panama, Ecuador, Peru, Brazil, Chile and Argentina, implementing Fishery Improvement Projects (FIPs) for small and large, artisanal and industrial fisheries.

About Artisan Catch:
Artisan Catch connects its network of sustainable small-scale fisheries to chefs and restaurants throughout the US. It recognizes that today’s customers are not only looking for quality seafood but are also looking for products that are sourced in an environmentally and socially responsible manner. The company is invested in efforts that support local fishing communities and fishery improvement programs that ensure fishing for the future. Other FIP involvement includes the grouper & octopus fisheries in the Yucatan.