GLOBALG.A.P. and Bureau Veritas recently held a joint panel on good aquaculture practices at Polfish, Poland’s only international fair on seafood processing and products, in Gdánsk, Poland. The panel presentations offered insights into current developments in aquaculture from the perspective of both the certification provider and the certification body.

The GGN label: Good Aquaculture Practices That Catch the Eye

For GLOBALG.A.P., Remko Oosterveld, Commercial Manager for the GGN Label Aquaculture, presented the most important aspects of using the GGN consumer label in business-to-consumer communication. In answer to the question, “Why should you use the GGN consumer label?,” he pointed out that retailers and brand owners alike use the GGN consumer label to demonstrate their commitment to good aquaculture practices. They benefit from increased transparency across the world through the GLOBALG.A.P. Number (GGN) and the GGN consumer portal. The GGN consumer label is awarded to products produced according to the GLOBALG.A.P. Aquaculture Standard. This standard covers not only key sustainability aspects in the production of animal products for human consumption, but also food safety, environmental integrity, animal health and welfare, and socio-economic aspects. Ever since 2004, when the standard was introduced, feedback from producers with GLOBALG.A.P. certification shows that the standard has become a practical guide to their operations. Detailed criteria, written in simple and clear language, support GLOBALG.A.P.’s aim of working hand in hand with producers.

Sustainability Risks in the Food Supply Chain

Increasingly, the food industry is expected to satisfy requirements not only of food quality and safety, but also of sustainability. Sustainability – as broadly defined in the UN Sustainable Development Goals – includes topics relating to traceability, responsible use of agrochemicals, animal welfare, and GMOs. No less important, however, are labor practices and human rights, greenhouse gas emissions, and energy management.

In addressing the many sustainability challenges faced by the food industry, Witold Dżugan, director of the certification division at Bureau Veritas Poland, concentrated his presentation on sustainability-related risks in the food supply chain and how these risks can be mitigated through certification schemes and independent certification.

Certification as an Efficient Tool

Recognized certification schemes such as GLOBALG.A.P. provide an efficient tool that helps address sustainability concerns. Their requirements are developed with the participation of many different stakeholders and include strict governance and integrity mechanisms.

Independent certification bodies, such as the Polish Bureau Veritas, set up and manage extensive networks of auditors and inspectors to provide impartial assessment of producers’ compliance with, for example, good production practices, social and labor standards, and environmental, health, and safety requirements. Product labelling, such as the GGN consumer label, allows companies to demonstrate their commitment to a safe and responsible sourcing policy. (in Polish)

GGN Consumer Label Aquaculture