The World Benchmarking Alliance plans to assess the 30 largest seafood companies globally against the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. A public evaluation of their draft methodology takes place now through December.
Aviva, Index Initiative, and the United Nations Foundation launched the World Benchmarking Alliance (WBA) of business, nonprofit, and government organizations in late September to develop free, publicly available benchmarks that rank companies on their contributions to achieving the UN’s SDGs. These 17 goals were adopted in 2015 by more than a dozen countries and serve as a blueprint for addressing global challenges over the next decade.
The WBA ultimately plans to assess the progress of 2,000 companies across major areas of transformation. To start, the alliance is focusing on seafood for a Seafood Stewardship Index consisting of 30 company scorecards that show the extent that each one contributes to sustainable seafood production and trade.
Companies will get ranked from 1 to 30 for the index based on their performance levels. “We will show the seafood industry as it is, both the good and the bad,” said Bas Geerts, lead for the Seafood Stewardship Index.
Seafood is the single largest globally traded food commodity and the industry faces numerous serious challenges, the alliance’s draft methodology report says. “A legitimate and credible index can be a catalyst to drive this envisioned transition,” according to the alliance. “In other industries, benchmarking has already proven to incite companies to progress.”
US-based Trident Seafoods, Cargill Aqua Nutrition, Pacific Seafood Group, Tri Marine International, and Bumble Bee Foods are among the 30 public, private, and state-owned seafood companies included.
The alliance is holding a public consultation of their draft methodology through December 17. They aim to publish the methodology in March 2019 and then the first report toward the end of next year.
Geerts said, “If we are collectively bold enough to face and recognize the truth, then the industry will be in the best position to plot its critical next steps towards increasing levels of sustainability — environmental, social and economic — and, therefore, act as a future-proof steward of the world’s seafood resources and as such support the many people relying on them.”