The company behind the massive discards of sardines in Western Sahara is certified by Friend of the Sea for sustainable sardine fisheries. UPDATE: Friend of the Sea state company no longer is certified.
UPDATE: The story below were published at 12:12 on 19. Nov. Friend fo the Sea has later same day stated to Western Sahara Resource Watch that the company is no longer certified by Friend of the Sea. "Please be informed that anyway LGMC certificate has expired and we have not received request for renewal so far", Friend of the Sea wrote to WSRW
“LGMC has a very low discard rate seeing as both sardines and mackerels are schools of fish that tend to be monospecific and of a similar size”, stated Friend of the Sea on its website as it announced the certification of LGMC’s sardines and mackerels in 2010. See the shocking images of the massive discards of fish on WSRW.org here.
According to Friend of the Sea at the time, “the stocks are closely monitored by the Moroccan officials INRH (Institut National de Recherche Halieutique) and the ONP (Office National de Pêche)”.
Mr Omar Bennani, the LGMC’s Development & Strategy Manager proudly declared during the announcement, “I am pleased to have been awarded the Friend of the Sea certification as this proves to our consumers that we care about marine preservation and our selectivity means we only catch best quality products.”
Western Sahara Resource Watch calls on Friend of the Sea to immediately withdraw the certification of LGMC following the images of 60 tonnes discard episode posted on WSRW.org on 19 November 2013.
“Friend of the Sea should of immediate effect annul the certification given to LGMC. We also ask Friend of the Sea to withdraw any other certification issued to companies operating in Western Sahara. The images show that the Moroccan management of the fish stocks in the waters that it occupies is far from good enough to legitimize environmental approvals in that territory”, stated Western Sahara in a mail to Friend of the Sea today.
LGMC SA is a company that specializes in the production of canned fish and is a leader in Morocco. The Company owns several production sites, including three in Safi and one in Agadir on Moroccan Atlantic coast. All sites are controlled and managed by LGMC’s head office based in Casablanca. LGMC’s sales are mainly oriented to Europe (in particular Germany, UK, France, Belgium, Austria, Italy, Spain, Czech Republic...), Africa, the Middle East and North America. LGMC’s products are equally sold under LGMC’s own brands (the two main being ANNY and JOSIANE) and white labels.