Tourism Guide Africa - - CONTENTS -

South Africa’s coast­line spans two oceans, hous­ing an ex­tra­or­di­nary un­der­sea diver­sity. It is no won­der that South Africans en­joy their seafood, not for­get­ting the in­flux of tourists who look for­ward to our seafood spread. Seafood is the most traded pri­mary com­mod­ity in the world, yet how of­ten do we ac­knowl­edge that the kind of seafood we buy or sell can have en­vi­ron­men­tal im­pacts at both a global and a lo­cal level? Over the last few decades, there has been a dra­matic in­crease in the amount of fish be­ing taken out of the oceans. Lat­est stud­ies es­ti­mate that 89% of all fish­eries are over­ex­ploited. The way seafood is traded is pri­mar­ily driven by the de­mand of the seafood lover. That means that it is im­por­tant for us to make good choices when choos­ing our seafood so that we can make sure we con­serve our shared oceans and en­sure our favourite seafood is still around for our chil­dren, as well as their chil­dren, to en­joy.

So what can you do about it? Well, quite a lot ac­tu­ally.

Luck­ily, choos­ing sus­tain­ably is so much eas­ier with WWF-SASSI. The South African Sus­tain­able Seafood Ini­tia­tive (SASSI) of­fers a num­ber of tools to em­power con­sumers to make re­spon­si­ble seafood choices. The SASSI list­cat­e­gorises pop­u­lar seafood species ac­cord­ing to their con­ser­va­tion sta­tus: seafood on the Red list should never be bought (Th­ese are ei­ther il­le­gal to buy or sell or con­sid­ered un­sus­tain­able), Or­ange-listed species have as­so­ci­ated en­vi­ron­men­tal rea­sons for con­cern, and Green-listed species are the most sus­tain­able choices avail­able, com­ing from the best man­aged pop­u­la­tions. The SASSI list is de­rived from the fol­low­ing in­for­ma­tion about a species: What is it? Where is it from? How is it caught? Th­ese ques­tions un­pack the cur­rent sta­tus of stocks, man­age­ment in each re­gion and the en­vi­ron­men­tal im­pacts of a fish­ery. All this in­for­ma­tion has been con­densed and pack­aged into a handy SASSI app, a pocket card you can slot into your wal­let, and a nifty FishMSser­vice; text the name of the fish to the num­ber 079-499-8795 and you will soon get a re­sponse telling you to tuck in, think twice or avoid com­pletely!

WWF-SASSI also works with a num­ber of retail and restau­rant part­ners to pro­mote sus­tain­ably and re­spon­si­bly har­vested seafood prod­ucts, thus con­tribut­ing to­wards the main­te­nance of healthy and pro­duc­tive ma­rine ecosys­tems, as well as eco­nomic and liveli­hood se­cu­rity in South Africa.

Ul­ti­mately, your choice of one type of seafood over an­other re­ally does mat­ter to the health of our ma­rine en­vi­ron­ment here in South Africa, and even glob­ally. As a con­sumer, you have the power to ask the ‘What, Where and How’ of your seafood, wher­ever you go, and con­sult with the SASSI App to make a sus­tain­able seafood choice. Re­mem­ber, not all seafood is equal. YOU HAVE A CHOICE, SO MAKE IT GREEN!


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