Suppliers' News

GSA certification programs grew 18% in 2023

The retention rate for the Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) program was 91%.

Seabass bream farm_shutterstock_2259620909
Credits: Shutterstock
February 26, 2024

The Global Seafood Alliance’s (GSA) third-party certification programs grew 18% in 2023, as the year ended with a total of 3,959 certified processing plants (including farmed and wild capture), farms (including fallow), hatcheries and feed mills in 43 countries. The retention rate for the Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) program was 91%.

Of the total 3,959 facilities, 541 are processing plants, 2,905 are farms, 153 are feed mills and 360 are hatcheries. Plants certified to GSA’s Seafood Processing Standard (SPS) reported more than 3 million metric tons of annual production. In addition, GSA ended the year with 32 vessels certified to the Responsible Fishing Vessel Standard.

Producers made many improvements to their operations in 2023 to attain certification to GSA standards. Any non-conformities noted during the audit must be addressed before becoming certified. During 2023, processing plants, farms, hatcheries and feed mills made a total of 8,428 improvements, including 2,666 addressing food safety, 2,623 addressing social accountability, 2,307 addressing environmental responsibility, 493 addressing animal health and welfare, and 339 addressing traceability.

It was a year of many firsts for GSA in 2023: The world’s first BAP-certified sturgeon farm (Azerbaijan Fish Farm LLC), Sri Lanka’s first BAP-certified black tiger shrimp processing plant (Srimic Exports Pvt. Ltd.), the first BAP-certified producer in South Africa (SanLei), the first BAP-certified feed mill in Norway (Skretting) and the first BAP-certified facility in Japan (Ainan Fishery Cooperative Association). There were also two companies – Cape Fish and Associated Seafoods – that were the first in South Africa and the UK to attain certification for their wild seafood processing plants.

This year marks 20 years since the first BAP-certified farm, a shrimp farm in Belize, attained certification. Since launching its first standards for farms in 2004, GSA’s portfolio of assurances has grown to cover processing plants for both farmed and wild-capture species, hatcheries, feed mills and fishing vessels.