Fair Trade Premium Arrives to Pulau Seram

23 May 2016
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5 Fishers Associations in Seram, Maluku, consisting of 125 fishers has been officially certified by Fair Trade USA for yellowfin tuna they catch with the support of the supply chain: PT. Harta Samudra and Coral Triangle Processors (CTP), with Masyarakat dan Perikanan Indonesia (MDPI) as the implementing partner, supporting activities in the field. The Yellowfin tuna they catch will be sold at Safeway supermarkets in the United States for consumers who want to buy products from sources that are socially and environmentally responsible.

In 2014, Fair Trade USA released the Fair Trade program for wild captured fishery products in an attempt to provide benefits for fishermen and the environment. Fair Trade certification will require the implementation of a 6 year standard, with each year requiring progressive improvements, a process which is 3rd party audited. Here are the standard components needed to meet the audit requirements: 1) Structural conditions: the formation of Fishers Association, the establishment of the Fair Trade Committee, 2) Empowerment and Community Development, 3) The fundamental human rights, 4) Wages, working conditions and access to services in accordance with government regulations 5) Resources management, 6) Trade requirements: where there is agreement between supply chain participants in ensuring traceability and transparency exists.

Fishers Associations that have been involved in Fair Trade program and are involved in efforts to meet the standards to achieve Fair Trade certification will receive Fair Trade premium fund paid by consumers who buy Fair Trade products. Premium fund is about 10% of the dock. This premium fund will go to the account of the Fair Trade Committee and not into fishers’ personal pockets and should be used for community projects, including a 30% contribution to environmentally focused projects. The first premium fund received by Fair Trade Committee in Seram was Rp. 71,662,448 (~5450 USD).

The fishers already planned some program activities, such as the construction of clean water network in the village with a budget of 40 million in Haruo Village, help building mosque in Yaholu Village with a budget of 50 million, the waste management and recycling in Supulessy Village, purchasing GPS for Fishers Association members in Tehoru Village and for incentives for the active participation of members in identifying and collecting data of Endangered, Threatened and Protected (ETP) animals they met/ interacted during their fishing trip in Sakanusa Village.

MDPI would like to say congratulations to all fishers in Seram and to all Fair Trade team for their amazing effort in making this happen!

The handover of Fair Trade premium fund to fishers in Seram. Photo credit: MDPI

Writer: Indah Rufiati

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