Eight Indonesian one-by-one tuna fisheries embark upon MSC certification

December 24, 2019

The advancement of these fisheries towards certification against the Marine Stewardship Council standard, is a tangible demonstration of the ability of small-scale fisheries to support their local communities and compete in the global marketplace.

[18 DECEMBER 2019/LONDON, UK] The International Pole & Line Foundation (IPNLF), the only non-profit association that is solely committed to promoting responsible one-by-one tuna fisheries and supply chains, welcomes the confirmation that eight Indonesian pole-and-line and handline tuna fisheries will enter the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certification process. Working in close collaboration with their local partner, Asosiasi Perikanan Pole & Line dan Handline Indonesia (AP2HI), the Foundation commended the highly focused, collaborative endeavours of multiple stakeholders that have enabled these fisheries to reach this important milestone.

The eight fisheries engaged in the process are scattered throughout the Indonesian archipelago, from North Sulawesi and North Maluku, to the Banda Sea, and East and West Flores in the south. They comprise highly selective, small-scale operations which harvest tuna with very low impact on other ocean species and the environment. In Indonesia, the one-by-one tuna sector is often a family or community business and is a major contributor towards local economies and food security. For many years, IPNLF has been helping to preserve this important economic and cultural heritage by supporting local capacity-building initiatives.

Commenting on the announcement, Trian Yunanda, Director of Fish Resources Management at the Indonesian Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries (MMAF), said, “IPNLF and AP2HI have been working closely with MMAF on improving data collection and fisheries monitoring programmes, leading to more effective management of these fisheries. All of us need to recognise the important role that truly sustainable fisheries, that contribute to environmental, social and economic improvements, can make to the livelihoods of our fishers, and to the viability of our businesses. These actions lead to healthier oceans for us and for future generations.”

Jeremy Crawford, Southeast Asia Director of IPNLF, praised the determined efforts of AP2HI members and other stakeholders and the vital support provided by the Ministry in progressing the eight fisheries towards full assessment. “We are pleased to be part of this important process of building value in the local one-by-one tuna supply chain. Together with our local partners and with the support of the Indonesian Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries, IPNLF has been able to realise significant operational and social improvements.”

These improvement programmes include data collection and monitoring and are often carried out by local observers who monitor and collect valuable information at sea as well as portside. At sea, information on the vessels and crew is collected, along with data on bycatch levels, bait composition and consumption levels. On land, enumerators record catch-by-catch information on the volume of the different tuna species landed, bycatch levels and operational information such as the duration of trips, number of crew on board and vessel characteristics. These data improvements can inform better decision making, ultimately leading to more effective fisheries management.

“Getting these eight fisheries to this crucial point has required a huge collective effort and I am very proud of the manner in which all parties involved continue to pull together – to build healthier fisheries and healthier oceans – now and for future generations. Our hope is that these fisheries will soon be able to supply consumers with sustainable one-by-one caught tuna. This initiative will not only help improve the livelihoods of our traditional one-by-one fishermen, but will also ensure a sustainable industry” says Janti Djuari, Chairperson of AP2HI.

The MSC Fisheries Standard uses three core principles against which fisheries are assessed: sustainable fish stocks, minimising environmental impact so that other species and habitats within the ecosystem remain healthy, and effective fisheries management. In addition to operational improvements, the Indonesian fisheries are also implementing tangible social improvements, such as internationally accepted codes of conduct and labour standards.

SAI Global has been appointed as the Conformity Assessment Body (CAB) and an official announcement on the assessment, which includes the release of the Announcement Comment Draft Report (ACDR), is expected early in January 2020 when the MSC’s office reopens after the Christmas break. Stakeholders will then have a 60-day period to review the scoring presented in the ACDR and the date of the site visit will be announced.

The demand for sustainable caught tuna that includes social and economic benefits is steadily increasing. International markets have already expressed their commercial interest in the tuna produced by these fisheries and stand ready to buy. In June 2018, a special joint agreement was signed between MMAF, IPNLF and 14 buyers, brands and retailers with the commitment made by these supply chains to preferentially source MSC-certified one-by-one tuna from Indonesia’s tuna fisheries over non-certified tuna, once these products become available. “Promises such as these, provide further validation of the critical role played by fisheries that put the three pillars of sustainability – environmental, social and economic benefits – at the forefront of their operations. It is the only way to ensure that these vulnerable communities retain access to food security and economic wellbeing in the long-term,” says Jeremy Crawford, Southeast Asia Director of IPNLF.



The International Pole & Line Foundation (IPNLF) works to develop, support and promote socially and environmentally responsible pole-and-line, handline and troll tuna fisheries around the world. IPNLF’s ambition is to contribute to thriving coastal fisheries, including the people, communities, businesses and seas connected with them.  As a hub for sustainably-minded organisations, we use the influence of the market to forge change through practical fishery projects and stakeholder cooperation. IPNLF membership is open to organisations involved in the one-by-one caught tuna supply chain. Allied with our Members, IPNLF demonstrates the value of one-by-one caught tuna to consumers, policymakers and throughout the supply chain. We work across science, policy and the seafood sector, using an evidence-based, solutions-focused approach with guidance from our Scientific & Technical Advisory Committee and Board of Trustees.

IPNLF was officially registered in the United Kingdom in 2012 (Charity 1145586), with branch offices in London, the Maldives, Indonesia and South Africa, and a staff presence in France, Germany, Netherlands, North America and St Helena.


The Indonesian Pole & Line and Handline Fisheries Association (AP2HI) is founded on the needs of the pole & line and handline industry players to unite their aspiration in a legal organization and to

promote and support the sustainability of tuna fisheries in Indonesia and contribute to innovating the industry and achieve MSC certification through a fisheries improvement program.

AP2HI has more than 35 active members including fishermen, fishing companies and processing industry. They all commit to the organization’s code of conduct to implement sustainable fishing practices. The services of AP2HI span the entire fisheries improvement program and include training, tracking and tracing, data collection, observer programs, vessel registration, port sampling, bait cultivation, liaison with government and branding and promotion.

AP2HI is the owner and manager of the Indonesian tuna branding initiative.


Debbie Wirtjes-Lewis

Email: debbie.wirtjes-lewis@ipnlf.org

Tel: +31 (0) 65 209 3069


Contact person:

Mrs. Janti Djuari

Gedung Griya Upakara Lantai 3C

Jalan Cikini IV No. 10, Menteng, 10330, Jakarta Pusat, Indonesia

Email: info@ap2hi.org

Phone: +62 21 – 21236469

www.indonesiantuna.com (branding website)
www.ap2hi.org (association website)