What types of evidence are used in the wild capture risk assessment?

The scoring matrix is found in the “risk assessment methods and guidance document”. Risk assessments can be completed in MS Excel and based upon the following types of evidence, with sources fully referenced:

  • Scientific peer-reviewed literature
  • Fisheries management reports
  • Online resources; e.g. FishBase, SeaLifeBase, IUCN redlist, FisheriesProgress.org
  • Expert opinion (reference as pers. comms.)

Not at the moment. A resource is currently in development by Monterey Bay Aquarium, Sustainable Fisheries Partnership, and Liberty Shared, and we will share the link when this is live.

Profiles will be reviewed annually, and information updated if necessary.

Gear risks will be taken into account in Section 2.3 of the risk assessment, irrespective of whether a species is assessed using the Productivity Susceptibility Analysis (Pathway A) or Full Stock Assessment (Pathway B). At this stage the gear risk reflects the impacts of the riskiest fishing method, as for most buyers in Hong Kong it will be difficult to ascertain what gear was used to capture the fish with any degree of confidence. If HKSSC members can identify further information direct from suppliers, such as gear type, this can work towards lowering the overall risk rating for their internal due diligence purposes. Differentiation of gear risks is certainly something we will look at in more depth for the next phase of the project. To more accurately determine gear risk, we encourage users of this website to provide clear information on the gear types and sea area being fished, to enable us to better assess gear risks with respect to bycatch and habitat impacts.

The risk assessment score reflects the criteria specified in the risk assessment method which is aligned with the HKSSC Sourcing Code of Conduct. There could be numerous reasons why the score differs to similar profiles on other websites, for example, a different method is used that reflects the values of the scheme owner, or the scale or scope of the assessment are slightly different. If you have any concerns on how a profile has been scored please get in touch with the website administrator.

We strive to ensure the accuracy of all our assessments. The initial assessments have been conducted by fisheries / aquaculture experts, who have specialist knowledge of species common to the region and / or seafood trade. We aim to ensure that profiles are peer-reviewed by a specialist with expert knowledge on the biology and production risks of the species. When this has not been possible, we have noted this at the top of each website profile and welcome specialists to contact us to review the profile. If you have any concerns on the accuracy of the information please get in touch with the website administrator.

For the fisheries risk assessment a data limited method has been developed, that entails a modified version of a Productivity Susceptibility Analysis (PSA) for the South East Asia region. If there are knowledge gaps these will be noted in the assessment. The aquaculture risk assessment has been developed to take into account information across seven risks factors. If there is not enough information to reliably assess a given risk factor, this will be noted in the assessment.

The risk assessment ratings are derived from a fishery and aquaculture risk assessment method that can be found here. The risk assessment scoring criteria have been developed to align with the risk ratings defined in the HKSSC Sourcing Code. For aquaculture species profiles, we have provided a baseline risk assessment for the key production countries to act as a starting point for HKSSC members to help inform their farm level audits.

Yes, this is the intention, but we will provide a period for feedback from the HKSSC members on the initial profiles before completing any translation.

The creation of new profiles is based on requests from HKSSC members, and approval from a Technical Oversight Committee. Please consider joining the HKSSC if you want to influence the development of new content on the website.

The HKSSC Sourcing Code recommends that for high risk fisheries the member should only source with appropriate engagement and monitoring of progress. If a species is listed as vulnerable, endangered or critically endangered on the IUCN red list or is considered threatened in the national (source country) legislation AND the fisheries is considered high risk then the Member should stop sourcing until an effective improvement plan (including monitoring) has been established and the risk rating has been reduced to medium. Any CITES II listed fish should be sourced legally with relevant permits. For farmed seafood, HKSSC Sourcing Code recommends the member to conduct an audit of the farmed product source using a good aquaculture standard or code of practice and that all required actions identified to correct non-compliance should be communicated with the supplier and the timescale for this agreed. For critical non-conformance, such as one that would affect legal compliance, the fish should not be sourced until corrective measures have been put in place. Given that the farmed products risk ratings on this site are based on general findings related to the country profile and not specific to a particular farm or supplier, these findings can be used by HKSSC Members and others to identify potential risk areas that can form part of their supplier engagement. These country profiles could also be used to initiate an Aquaculture Improvement Project (AIP).

Species scored a low risk will either be resilient to overfishing and/ or come from a well-managed fishery. In the case of aquaculture, low risk will mean that production is covered by a third-party certification scheme or the nature of the activity means it is low impact across all risk factors. Please see the risk assessment method for exact definitions. Seafood sustainability is a complex subject, for species scored a low risk in the assessment there may still be risks for you to consider as a buyer. For example, illegal or unreported fishing and supply chain traceability risks, the carbon footprint of the production method, air miles involved in transportation, treatment of workers in the supply-chain, food safety risks etc.

The risk assessment profiles have been developed to make accessing information as straightforward as possible. The risk assessments have been undertaken for the capture / production of a species at a country level, or sea area (in the case of tuna species). Each website profile contains general information on the species biology and fisheries, and the general factors that may make a species risky. Country risks are then scored as ‘high’, ‘medium’ or ‘low’ risk, according to the risk assessment method, and a summary provided. Links are provided to the full risk assessment. The website information is intended as a starting point to help buyers with their due diligence. Supplier questions are also provided for each profile, to provide a prompt for the key risk considerations a buyer may want to ask their supplier.

The Hong Kong Seafood Risk Assessment has been developed to provide Hong Kong seafood businesses with a free resource to help indicate which fisheries and farmed seafood source countries are low risk and which are at high risk in terms of unsustainable fishing / production practices for a given species. If you are a member of the Hong Kong Sustainable Seafood Coalition, this seafood risk assessment will help your business align with the HKSSC Voluntary Code of Conduct on Responsible Fish and Seafood Sourcing.

Whilst several online seafood guides / risk assessments exist, none are tailored to the unique requirements of the Hong Kong seafood market. HKSSC members required a seafood sourcing information tool that is bespoke to their needs and can provide easily accessible information to inform their seafood sourcing policies.

The Hong Kong Sustainable Seafood Coalition (HKSSC) is an industry-led coalition that aims to advance the sustainable seafood market in Hong Kong, by promoting responsible purchasing and consumption of fish and seafood. Their vision is for all seafood imported into Hong Kong to be legal, traceable and biologically sustainable. HKSSC is not a certification scheme or an eco-label.

The HKSSC provides two Voluntary Codes of Conduct, a Sourcing and a Labelling code, that members are asked to commit to. Details of these codes can be found at http://hksustainableseafoodcoalition.org/resources/ .


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  • An aquaculture improvement project (AIP) is a multi-stakeholder process to address the cumulative impacts and shared disease risks affecting aquaculture through a zonal management approach. AIPs utilize the power of the private sector to encourage positive changes toward sustainability and ensure that these changes endure through improved policy and management strategies. An AIP directory can be found at https://aipdirectory.org/Aquaculture Improvement Project (AIP)
  • The ASC provides sustainable and responsible aquaculture producers with a stringent certification and labelling scheme guaranteeing to consumers that the seafood they are purchasing is sustainable for the environment, and socially responsible. The ASC was founded in 2010 by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) and the Dutch Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH).Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC)
  • Set of small‑ and medium‑scale boats that generally fish close to the shore using traditional or non‑industrial methods and supply local markets for human consumption in coastal communities.Artisanal fishing


  • The variability among living organisms from all sources including, inter alia, terrestrial, marine and other aquatic ecosystems and the ecological complexes of which they are part; this includes diversity within species, between species and of ecosystems. Diversity indices are measures of richness (the number of species in a system); and to some extent, evenness (variances of species’ local abundance). They are therefore indifferent to species substitutions which may, however, reflect ecosystem stresses (such as those due to high fishing intensity).Biological diversity or biodiversity
  • A specific type of reference point. A biological reference point indicates a particular biological state of a fishery resource indicator corresponding to a situation considered as desirable (Target reference point, TRP) or undesirable and requiring immediate action (Limit reference point, LRP, and Threshold reference point, ThRP).Biological reference points
  • A fishing technique also referred to as demersal trawling, which covers several gear types, all of which use a cone‑like net with a closed “cod‑end” that holds the catch. These nets are towed by one or two boats and are designed to catch fish living at great depths or on the bottom of the sea (demersal zone).Bottom trawling
  • Species taken in a fishery targeting on other species or on a different size range of the same species. That part of the bycatch which has no human value is discarded and returned to the sea, usually dead or dying.Bycatch
  • A device inserted in a fishing gear to allow non‑target species or individuals (juveniles) or endangered species (e.g. seals, turtles, dolphins) to escape alive.Bycatch reduction device


  • Capture-based aquaculture (CBA) is an industry that utilizes wild-captured specimens as stocking animals for on growing or storage. Thus, contributing to a direct link between capture fisheries and aquaculture of these resources. Examples of CBA are collection of early life stages of many crustaceans and adolescent tunas for grow-out in aquaculture systems.Capture Based Aquaculture (CBA)
  • An official document accompanying a consignment that must be validated by the competent authority, in such a way that it provides accurate and verifiable information that let trace fish from their point of capture through the entire supply chain.Catch certificate
  • Catch documentation schemes are global traceability systems that certify a unit of legal catch, providing a catch certificate to the legal owner of the fish (at the point of capture) and then trace the movement of this unit of catch from unloading through international trade (export and re‑export), into the end market (the first point of sale/import).Catch documentation scheme
  • The quantity of fish caught (in number or in weight) with one standard unit of fishing effort; e.g. number of fish taken per 1000 hooks per day or weight of fish, in tons, taken per hour of trawling. CPUE is often considered an index of fish biomass (or abundance). Sometimes referred to as catch rate.Catch-per-unit-effort (CPUE)
  • Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) is an international agreement between governments whose aim is to ensure that international trade in specimens of wild animals and plants does not threaten their survival. It was drafted as a result of a resolution of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and finally agreed in 1973.CITES
  • A partnership arrangement in which government and the legitimate interested parties in a fishery share the responsibility and authority for the management of a fishery.Co-management


  • A species that is taken incidentally while fishing for a target species, that is caught and discarded at sea, whether dead or alive — including target species fish that are discarded due to undesired quality or size.Discards
  • Gillnet suspended by floats so that it fishes the top few meters of the water column.Driftnet


  • Endangered, threatened or protected species. Designation used in some countries for vulnerable species such as marine mammals, sea turtles, and others.ETP species
  • Sea zone prescribed by the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea in 1982 over which a state has special rights regarding the exploration and use of marine resources. It stretches from the baseline out to 200 nautical miles from its coast.Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ)
  • Applied on a fish stock, it is the proportion of the numbers or biomass removed by fishing. A 10% exploitation rate means that 10% of the available stock is being harvested within the time frame considered (per year, per month, etc.). As a measure of fishing pressure, it is proportional to fishing mortality.Exploitation rate


  • Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations. Oversee the collation of global fisheries and aquaculture statistics, as well as working with countries to improve their capacity for fisheries and aquaculture management.FAO
  • In general, the potential reproductive capacity of an organism or population expressed in the number of eggs (or offspring) produced during each reproductive cycle. Fecundity usually increases with age.Fecundity
  • Man‑made floating objects specifically designed to encourage fish aggregation at the device. They can be anchored to the ocean floor (anchored FADs) or set to drift in the open ocean (drifting FADs). FADs are widely used as a fishing method due to its high efficiency, although they have been associated with several negative ecosystem impacts, such as bycatch and overfishing. Today, they support a large number of fishing vessels, especially purse seine fleets targeting tropical tunas in open oceans, but also artisanal pole‑and‑line vessels in shallow nearshore waters. Fish aggregating device (FAD)
  • The living resources in the community or population from which catches are taken in a fishery. Use of the term fish stock usually implies that the particular population is more or less isolated reproductively from other stocks of the same species and hence self-sustaining. In a particular fishery, the fish stock may be one or several species of fish but here is also intended to include commercial invertebrates and plants.Fish stock or fish resource
  • A fishery improvement project (FIP) uses the power of the private sector to address sustainability and management challenges in a fishery. FisheryProgress.org provides a range of information about global FIPs from a quick snapshot of progress and opportunities to get involved to detailed evidence for improvements.Fisheries Improvement Project (FIP)
  • These are the institutions responsible for fisheries management, including the formulation of the rules that govern fishing activities. The fishery management organization, and its subsidiary bodies, may also be responsible for all ancillary services, such as the collection of information, its analysis, stock assessment, monitoring, control and surveillance (MCS), consultation with interested parties, application and/or determination of the rules of access to the fishery, and resource allocation.Fisheries management organizations
  • The term fishery can refer to the sum of all fishing activities on a given resource, for example a hake fishery or shrimp fishery. It may also refer to the activities of a single type or style of fishing on a particular resource, for example a beach seine fishery or trawl fishery. Fishery
  • The total amount of fishing activity on the fishing grounds over a given period of time, often expressed for a specific gear type e.g. number of hours trawled per day, number of hooks set per day or number of hauls of a beach seine per day. Fishing effort would frequently be measured as the product of (a) the total time spent fishing, and (b) the amount of fishing gear of a specific type used on the fishing grounds over a given unit of time. When two or more kinds of gear are used, they must be adjusted to some standard type in order to derive and estimate of total fishing effort.Fishing effort
  • A technical term which refers to the proportion of the fish available being removed by fishing in a small unit of time; e.g. a fishing mortality rate of 0.2 implies that approximately 20% of the average population will be removed in a year due to fishing. Fishing mortality can be translated into a yearly exploitation rate (see above) expressed as a percentage, using a mathematical formula.Fishing mortality
  • Used broadly in this document to describe the total number of units of any discrete type of fishing activity utilising a specific resource. Hence, for example, a fleet may be all the purse seine vessels in a specific sardine fishery, or all the fishers setting nets from the shore in a tropical multispecies fishery.Fleet
  • Fish frozen soon after capture, either on-board a fishing vessel with freezing plant (usually vertical plate freezers), such as a freezer trawler, or on a factory ship that is equipped to process its own catch on-board and/or the catch of other fishing vessels.Frozen at sea
  • Term used to qualify a stock which is probably neither being overexploited nor underexploited and is producing, on average, close to its Maximum Sustainable Yield. This situation would correspond to fishing at FMSY (in a classical production model relating yield to effort) or Fmax (in a model relating yield-per-recruit to fishing mortality).Fully exploited


  • The accidental capture of marine fauna (primarily sharks and turtles) by fishing gear (usually gillnets, or traps, pots, etc.) that has been lost or discarded into the sea and which continues to entangle animals.Ghost fishing
  • Founded in 1997, the Global Aquaculture Alliance (GAA) is an international non-governmental organization dedicated to advocacy, education and leadership in responsible aquaculture. GAA has become a leading standards-setting organization for aquaculture seafood, through its Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) certification standards.Global Aquaculture Alliance (GAA)
  • GSSI is a global partnership that has established a benchmark for seafood certification schemes. It was set up by the seafood industry, governmental, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations to build confidence in certified seafood.Global Sustainable Seafood Initiative (GSSI)


  • Set of well-defined management actions that describe how the harvest is to be managed (e.g., catch or effort-related limits) based on the state of a specified indicator(s) of stock status. Changes in stock status indicators must be measured against appropriate biological reference points inferred from monitoring data or models.Harvest control rules
  • Not to be confused with a management strategy. A harvesting strategy is a plan, under input or output control, for working out how the allowable catch from a stock will be calculated each year e.g. as a constant proportion of the estimated biomass.Harvesting strategy
  • Waters outside national jurisdictions.High seas


  • Illegal fishing occurring when vessels or harvesters operate in violation of the laws of a fishery. This term can apply to fisheries that are under the jurisdiction of a coastal state or to high‑seas fisheries regulated by Regional Fisheries Management Organizations (RFMOs).Illegal fishing
  • A unique vessel identifier (UVI), which consists of the three letters “IMO” followed by a unique seven‑digit number assigned to sea‑going merchant ships under the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS).International Maritime Organisation (IMO) number
  • International Seafood Sustainability Foundation (ISSF) was formed in 2009 as a global, non-profit partnership among the tuna industry, scientists and World Wide Fund for Nature. The multi-stakeholder group states its mission is to undertake science-based initiatives for the long-term conservation and sustainable use of tuna stocks, reducing bycatch and promoting ecosystem health.International Seafood Sustainability Foundation (ISSF)
  • Established in 1964, The International Union for Conservation of Nature’s Red List of Threatened Species has evolved to become the world’s most comprehensive information source on the global conservation status of animal, fungi and plant species.IUCN red list
  • Illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing. See glossary entries for specific definitions.IUU fishing
  • A list of vessels presumed to have carried out illegal, unreported, or unregulated (IUU) fishing activities. Several RFMOs keep a record of vessels associated with this kind of activities under their convention areas.IUU vessel list


  • The amount of fish (usually in tons) harvested from the sea and unloaded at port. Landings do not necessarily correspond to catches, which include the discards that are not brought to the land.Landings
  • Official record of catch and effort data made onboard by fishers during the fishing operations, which includes information on both target species and non‑target species. Tuna‑RFMOs and flag states usually require that vessels complete logbooks, since they are an essential tool of data collection for stock assessment and further development of management measures.Logbook
  • A fishing method using a very long main fishing line (usually made of thick monofilament), to which many smaller lines with hooks are attached. Fishers bait the hooks to attract target species. Longlines are used to fish in both open‑ocean and coastal habitats, and they can be set at any depth by using a combination of floats and weights.Longline


  • The legal entity which has been assigned by a State or States with a mandate to perform certain specified management functions in relation to a fishery, or an area (e.g. a coastal zone). Generally used to refer to a state authority, the term may also refer to an international management organisation.Management authority
  • The strategy adopted by the management authority to reach the operational objectives. It consists of the full set of management measures applied in that fishery.Management strategy
  • A protected marine intertidal or subtidal area, within territorial waters, EEZs or in the high seas, set aside by law or other effective means, together with its overlying water and associated flora, fauna, historical and cultural features. It provides degrees of preservation and protection for important marine biodiversity and resources; a particular habitat (e.g. a mangrove or a reef) or species, or sub-population (e.g. spawners or juveniles) depending on the degree of use permitted. The use of MPAs (for scientific, educational, recreational, extractive and other purposes including fishing) is strictly regulated and could be prohibited.Marine protected area
  • The Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) is an independent non-profit organization which sets a standard for sustainable fishing. Fisheries that wish to demonstrate they are well-managed and sustainable compared to the science-based MSC standard are assessed by a team of experts who are independent of both the fishery and the MSC. Seafood products can display the blue MSC ecolabel only if that seafood can be traced back through the supply chain to a fishery that has been certified against the MSC standardMarine Stewardship Council (MSC)
  • The highest theoretical equilibrium yield that can be continuously taken (on average) from a stock under existing (average) environmental conditions without affecting significantly the reproduction process.Maximum sustainable yield (MSY)
  • Monitoring - the continuous requirement for the measurement of fishing effort characteristics and resource yields. Control - the regulatory conditions under which the exploitation of the resource may be conducted. Surveillance - the degree and types of observations required to maintain compliance with the regulatory controls imposed on fishing activities. Monitoring, Control and Surveillance


  • A technical term which refers to the proportion of the fish population dying by any causes other than fishing. As with fishing mortality, can be translated into a yearly natural mortality rate expressed as a percentage, using a mathematical formula. See also Fishing mortality.Natural mortality
  • Species that are incidentally captured while fishing for a target species. In tropical tuna fishing, these generally include minor tuna species (bullet and frigate tunas, Pacific black skipjack, little tunny), other bony fishes (mahi‑mahi, rainbow runner, billfishes), sharks, rays, turtles, etc. Some of these species can be targeted opportunistically during a fishing trip.Non-target species


  • Exploited beyond that limit which is believed to be sustainable in the long term and beyond which there is an undesirably high risk of stock depletion and collapse. The limit may be expressed, for example, in terms of a minimum biomass or a maximum fishing mortality, beyond which the resource would be considered to be over-exploited.Overexploited
  • The state of a stock that has been exploited beyond an ecologically sustainable limit and whose population size has become too low to ensure safe reproduction. Overfished stocks can be managed under a rebuilding plan that, over time, returns the population to optimal ecological levels. The stock may remain overfished for some time even though fishing pressure might be reduced or suppressed.Overfished
  • A form of over‑exploitation of fishery resources where the fishing intensity exceeds the capacity of a stock to maintain a sustainable ecological level. In overfishing, the fish stock is diminished to such an extent that the remaining adult fish are not able to replenish their population through natural reproduction. Prolonged overfishing rates lead to depletion of fish populations and the collapse of fisheries.Overfishing


  • A fish that inhabits the pelagic zone, i.e., the sunlit water column of coasts, open seas and oceans, but not near the shore.Pelagic fish
  • A fishing technique used to catch tuna, also known as “baitboat”. When a school of target fish is located, live baitfish are scattered onto the surface of the water, creating a feeding frenzy during which target fish will bite anything they see (“chumming”). The fishing area is sprayed with water to obscure the fishing line and further excite tuna. Fishers line up along the boat with a hand‑held wooden or fiberglass pole, with a short line and barbless hook attached. Once a fish is hooked, it is flicked up and over the head of the fisher, and placed on the deck.Pole-and-line
  • Relates to the birth, growth and death rates of a stock. A highly productive stock is characterised by high birth, growth and mortality rates, and as a consequence, a high turn-over and production to biomass ratio (P/B). Such stocks can usually sustain higher exploitation rates and, if depleted, could recover more rapidly than comparatively less productive stocks.Productivity
  • The Productivity and Susceptibility Analysis is a method for assessing the vulnerability of a fishery species or stock when a stock assessment is not available, using a set of predetermined criteria.Productivity Susceptibility Analysis (PSA)
  • A fishing method used in the open ocean targeted to dense schools of pelagic tuna‑species. It consists of a large vertical net that is deployed around an entire area to surround the school of fish. The purse seine has floats along the top line and chains or weights at its bottom to allow the net to sink. Once the fish school is encircled, the net is closed underneath the school by hauling the purse line at the bottom of the net, which is called “pursing”. As the volume of the net becomes smaller, the fish become more concentrated and the catch can be finally scooped out using a brailer. Purse seines can also be used to catch fish congregating around a fish aggregating device (FAD), which can result in higher levels of bycatch.Purse seine


  • A share of the Total Allowable Catch (TAC) allocated to an operating unit such as a country, a community, a vessel, a company or an individual fisherman (individual quota) depending on the system of allocation. Quotas may or may not be transferable, inheritable, and tradable. While generally used to allocate total allowable catch, quotas could be used also to allocate fishing effort or biomass.Quota


  • Recirculating aquaculture systems (RAS) have limited water exchange (typically up to 10% per day) and reuse the culture water. Mechanical and biological water treatment is used to maintain water quality. RAS generally requires less area and water than conventional aquaculture, allows higher stocking densities and provides greater control over the culture environment. RAS may provide a bio-secure environment.Recirculating Aquaculture System (RAS)
  • The number of fish (recruits) added to the exploitable stock, in the fishing area, each year, through a process of growth (i.e. the fish grows to a size where it becomes catchable) or migration (i.e. the fish moves into the fishing area).Recruitment
  • An estimated value derived from an agreed scientific procedure and/or an agreed model which corresponds to a state of the resource and/or of the fishery and can be used as a guide for fisheries management. Some reference points are general and applicable to many fish stocks, others should be stock-specific. See also Biological reference point.Reference point
  • International governing organizations formed by member nations or countries that share practical and/or financial fishing interests in a particular region of international waters or of highly migratory species. These include coastal states, whose waters are home to at least part of an identified fish stock, and distant water fishing nations (DWFNs), whose fleets travel to areas where a fish stock is found. RFMOs are dedicated to the sustainable management of fishery resources, and most of them have management powers—such as setting catch and fishing effort limits, technical measures, and control obligations.Regional Fisheries Management Organisation (RFMO)


  • A group of individuals in a species occupying a well defined spatial range independent of other stocks of the same species. Random dispersal and directed migrations due to seasonal or reproductive activity can occur. Such a group can be regarded as an entity for management or assessment purposes. Some species form a single stock (e.g. southern bluefin tuna) while others are composed of several stocks (e.g. albacore tuna in the Pacific Ocean comprises separate Northern and Southern stocks). The impact of fishing on a species cannot be fully determined without knowledge of this stock structure.Stock
  • The application of statistical and mathematical tools to relevant data in order to obtain a quantitative understanding of the status of the stock relative to management benchmarks (e.g. SSBMSY). A stock assessment is needed to make quantitative predictions of the stock’s reactions to alternative management measures.Stock assessment
  • A partnership dedicated to corporate responsibility that works together with the seafood industry and the marine conservation community to help fisheries meet the environmental requirements and move toward sustainability, based on the principles of information and improvement.Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP)
  • The use of components of biological diversity in a way and at a rate that does not lead to the long-term decline of biological diversity, thereby maintaining its potential to meet the needs and aspirations of present and future generations.Sustainable use


  • Those species that are primarily sought by the fishermen in a particular fishery. The subject of directed fishing effort in a fishery. There may be primary as well as secondary target species.Target species
  • Control measure that limits the overall level of catch, agreed to by fishery managers for a fish stock. TAC is usually set to achieve certain objectives (such as maintaining the stock at the target reference point, or for rebuilding the stock or avoiding overfishing).Total allowable catch
  • Stocks of fish that migrate across international boundaries or, in the case of the United States, across the boundaries between states or Fishery Management Council areas of control.Transboundary stock


  • A unique reference number for registered ships, which allows for quick and accurate vessel identification. A UVI can help to trace and verify a vessel’s activity over time, regardless of any change of name, ownership, or flag. International Maritime Organization (IMO) numbers are an internationally recognized type of UVI.Unique Vessel Identifier (UVI)
  • Fishing by vessels without nationality, by vessels flying the flag of a country not party to the RFMO governing that fishing area or species on the high seas, or harvesting in unregulated areas.Unregulated fishing
  • Fishing that is unreported or misreported to the relevant national authority or RFMO, in contravention of applicable laws and regulations.Unreported fishing


  • A satellite‑based system used in commercial fishing to allow environmental and fisheries regulatory organizations to track and monitor the activities of fishing vessels. VMS is a key part of monitoring control and surveillance programs at national and international levels.Vessel monitoring system


  • A term sometimes used to describe unfrozen fish.Wet fish
  • A wet market (also called a public market) is a marketplace selling fresh meat, fish, produce, and other perishable goods as distinguished from "dry markets" that sell durable goods such as fabric and electronics. Not all wet markets sell live animals, but the term wet market is sometimes used to signify a live animal market in which vendors slaughter animals upon customer purchase,Wet market
  • Fish species in which the main reserves of fat are in the liver, e.g. cod (Gadus morhua). Fish with less than 2% fat in the flesh.White fish
  • The global international organization that mediates trade agreements between nations.World Trade Organization
  • The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) is an international non-governmental organization founded in 1961 that works in the field of wilderness preservation and the reduction of human impact on the environment. It was formerly named the World Wildlife Fund, which remains its official name in Canada and the United States.WWF


  • The amount of biomass or the number of units that can be harvested currently in a fishery without compromising the ability of the population/ecosystem to regenerate itself.Yield