IFFO RS gave an update on the development of its multispecies criteria and on the new changes to the IFFO RS Improver Programme Application Procedures to a full room where the Director General of the DoF Dr. Adisorn Promthep and TSFR members including its president Mr. Pornsil Patchrintanakul and new members from different divisions were present. Francisco Aldon, General Manager of IFFO RS and Dr. Nicola Clark, Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning Coordinator presented the proposed timelines for identification of baseline criteria and thresholds for its multispecies component that is aimed to be ready for pilot testing from October 2018. Collaboration between the DoF, TSFR and IFFO RS in the development and implementation of the multispecies fisheries criteria is of great importance for the marine ingredient value chain. This will allow the standard to be relevant and fit for purpose for those types of fisheries that are common in the South East Asian area. This in turn will allow the Gulf of Thailand (GoT) fisheries and other multispecies fisheries from the area to demonstrate to the world the true intention for improvement by implementing, over a period of time, an effective fishery management system that will protect fish stocks, the wider marine ecosystem and will reduce the utilisation of IUU fish in the production of marine ingredients.

In addition, it will create the opportunity to enter international markets and be recognised by the major aquaculture standards in the world such as BAP and the ASC in the near future. The outcome of the meeting was that the DoF is committed to work together with the TSFR and IFFO RS in order to help with the development of the multispecies criteria and to bring the GoT up to the level that the IFFO RS Improver Programme requires for approval.