Western Australian fishery, Austral Fisheries has become the world’s first carbon neutral seafood business following a rigorous auditing process.

To achieve carbon neutral status, the business underwent a series of independent audits to determine its carbon footprint, then subsequently purchased carbon offsets to support planting trees to cover all of the company’s emissions from 1 January, 2016.

Close to 190,000 native trees were required to be planted to offset Austral’s estimated 27,422 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions for 2016. The calculations, quantity of offsets, and emissions reduction program of the business have been certified under the Australian Government Carbon Neutral Program.

“We’re excited to be able to launch our new brand – CN Fish – which to us is an inevitable ‘next step’ to ensure sustainable seafood for our customers, and demonstrates our determination to remain at the forefront of sustainability,” says Austral’s CEO David Carter. “Austral operates in many fisheries independently certified as sustainable and well managed, by groups such as the Marine Stewardship Council.  We now add to that our Carbon Neutral status.

“We identified a need to reduce and offset our carbon emissions to help ensure the health of our oceans, which is fundamental to our business.”

Chief executive of the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC), Rupert Howes congratulated Austral Fisheries on the achievement, adding that he hoped other seafood businesses’ will soon follow Austral’s lead. 

“Austral Fisheries was one of the first fishing businesses to support the MSC and they truly embody what it means to be stewards of the sea,” says Howes. “They are safeguarding seafood supplies with not just their sustainable fishing practices, with their MSC certified fisheries, but taking it a step further to also tackle climate change.”

Carter echoed Howes sentiments, adding that Austral will be working alongside suppliers and customers to identify innovative ways to reduce and offset carbon emissions in seafood production.

“We hope this action will be seen by others in the global seafood business as something to aspire to. Certainly we will be promoting the benefits of a lower carbon-use economy wherever we can.”


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