Sustainability

Nature gives us everything we need… So we should cherish it.

As a responsible corporate citizen, Sea Harvest believes in conducting its business in a sustainable manner to, inter alia, ensure that we preserve ocean stocks for future generations. Not only do we comply with the regulations and quotas imposed by the South African government and other international organisations, our company also plays an active role in initiating further measures to protect South Africa’s environmental resources. Sea Harvest has proven that commercial Enterprise, the Environment and Community Spirit are critical success factors in developing a healthy, relevant and sustainable business.

Sea Harvest’s South African Cape Hake® products, as well as Shark Bay Prawns can proudly carry the blue Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) logo – the gold standard in global sustainable fishing – assuring consumers of environmentally responsible fishery management. Based on research that is done annually, South Africa’s deep-sea trawl industry was re-certified as a sustainable and well-managed fishery by the MSC in 2015 for another five years. This is testament to the work the industry, together with government, is doing to improve its management of the fishery. This is the third consecutive time that the industry was re-certified by the MSC – the South African Hake industry was the first in the world to be certified by the MSC in 2005.

Affiliations

As a member of the South African Deep Sea Trawling Industry Association (SADSTIA), Sea Harvest interacts with government, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and other interested parties for the benefit of the South African deep-sea trawl industry.

Sea Harvest also participates in several regional conservation initiatives, including the Responsible Fisheries Alliance (RFA), in co-operation with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) South Africa, BirdLife South Africa, as well as other South African commercial fishing companies.

msc

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)

The MSC’s environmental standard is the world’s leading sustainability certification for wild-caught fish. This is the third consecutive time that the industry was re-certified by the MSC, with the first hake fishery in the world to be certified by the MSC in 2005.

  • Complying with relevant legislation aimed at reducing the interaction between seabirds, such as the Black-browed Albatross, and trawling gear through the introduction of bird scaring devices, including Tori lines.
  • Adhering to bycatch limitations to protect non-target species, such as kingklip and monk.
  • Adhering to sustainable fishing principles under-pinned by the industry’s MSC certification.
  • Complying with all conditions stipulated in the environmental permits issued to the company and relevant legislation.
  • Striving to reduce our freshwater consumption to protect this natural resource in a water scarce country.
  • Aiming to recycle and reduce most of our waste generated on site and at sea to ultimately reduce our total waste to landfill.
  • Monitoring the jetty and harbor for any visible pollution on a daily basis and conducting bi-weekly litter cleanups at neighboring beaches to help prevent pollution along the coastline.
  • Containing all waste on vessels at sea, thus preventing it from blowing into the ocean.

Sea Harvest is constantly introducing innovation to reduce its carbon footprint. As a company dependent on natural resources, Sea Harvest is committed to playing its role in addressing the potential challenges posed by climate change. A changing climate and its potential implications on fish stocks, means that we will need to continuously adapt to be able to continue to play a role in providing a rich protein source to millions of people for generations to come.

In an effort to manage our own greenhouse gas emissions, we have been measuring our carbon footprint since 2012. Emissions from fuel combustion of our fishing fleet and electricity consumption at our Saldanha processing facility generate most our direct emissions.

We also measure the indirect emissions associated with packaging materials, waste generation, upstream and downstream third party distribution, business travel and water consumption.

Year on year, our absolute emissions (scope 1 and 2) decreased by 2.7%, while our intensity emissions per ton of fish caught decreased by 9.46%.

Waste generated on board vessels and by our land-based operations were mostly sent to landfill sites prior to 2009. Thereafter, Sea Harvest adopted a new approach to the term ‘reduce-reuse-recycle’ by focusing primarily on waste sorting with recycling, thereby creating a sustainable waste economy. Sea Harvest actively ensures minimal waste to landfill by recycling materials, such as light and heavy steel, paper and packaging, glass, plastics, cables and oil. Meanwhile, our damaged fishing nets are donated to a local community project that uses it to make and sell nets to mussel farmers, thus creating employment.

All waste is controlled and disposed of in an environmentally acceptable manner, including hazardous chemical containers. We strive to maintain a high level of recyclable waste with more than 70% of our waste having been recycled in 2016. Not only does this program generate a substantial annual income for the company, it also benefits the environment.

The effects of climate change has resulted in a change in current weather patterns, leading to poor rainfall, low dam levels and severe water restrictions in the Western Cape. Sea Harvest has implemented many short- and medium-term controls at its Saldanha Bay processing facility, which have led to the company reducing its freshwater consumption by 30% since March 2017, compared to the same period in 2016.

Sea Harvest is a proud member of the Saldanha Bay Water Quality Forum Trust, where all environmental issues affecting the Saldanha Bay region are discussed.

Sea Harvest takes pride in its Environmental community projects in the Saldanha Bay region, which includes the planting of trees and weekly cleanups on nearby beaches. Employees are constantly educated about environmental issues and are provided with tips that can help them reduce their personal impact on the environment, while at home and at work.

 

Highlights

  • 71% recycled waste 2016
  • Total Emissions: 136 031.38 tCO₂e (FY2015)
  • 99% Marsh Audit Environmental Score 2016
  • More than 30% cumulative saving on Freshwater consumption at Saldanha Bay Processing facility
  • MSC certified