Tri Marine Group, recently purchased by the Italian conglomerate Bolton Group, is one of the world’s largest tuna supplying companies. The company is active in the fishing, trading and processing of tuna products. With fishing activities in the Atlantic, Indian and Pacific Ocean and facilities and offices in Europe, Asia, North and South America, the company has established a global presence.
Governance and management of stewardship practices
Tri Marine Group indicates that it is actively involved in implementing a range of measures to mitigate bycatch. In addition to following the best practices laid out by the International Seafood Sustainability Foundation, the company is working to decrease the use of harmful fish aggregating devices, while prohibiting shark finning and fishing lines that could harm shark and turtles. Its code of conduct also suggests that the company provides incentives to its suppliers to reduce bycatch.
On its website, Tri Marine Group recognises its role in feeding a growing global population but does not support its position with time-bound and forward-looking environmental or social targets, nor does it disclose quantitative performance metrics. Moreover, the company does not share whether it engages with stakeholders to gather and incorporate their perspectives into its group-wide sustainability approach. Tri Marine Group could improve its sustainability performance and accountability to stakeholders by publishing a more robust sustainability commitment and strategy.
The company website discloses information about the catch methods Tri Marine Group uses for each of its main species of tuna (i.e. skipjack, albacore, yellowfin and bigeye), recognising this as an important stakeholder issue. The company could increase its accountability and transparency by publicly disclosing detailed, quantitative data to include the volumes of the marine ingredients it catches, as well as the fisheries it sources from, the geographic location, and the certified status for the entirety of its portfolio.
In regard to the commitments and mechanisms Tri Marine Group has in place to reduce its environmental footprint, the company trails behind many of its industry peers. The company is actively promoting and engaging in the development of biodegradable fish aggregating devices (FADs) to reduce its dependence on plastics and other synthetic materials. However, Tri Marine Group reports that it has not yet conducted a broad greenhouse gas emissions assessment or taken direct action to reduce its emissions. Furthermore, the company does not provide evidence of its efforts to decrease freshwater use or reduce food loss and waste. Tri Marine Group could set transparent and forward-looking targets across these environmental issues and report on progress towards each, learning from its own performance on plastic reduction.
Implementation of human and labour rights policies
Tri Marine Group demonstrates a commitment to upholding human and labour rights across its supply chains by ensuring all suppliers comply with the Seafood Task Force Code of Conduct. However, the company does not show evidence of corporate procedures around the mechanisms in place to provide remediation for adverse human rights impacts.
Tri Marine Group invests in fishing and processing bases in the Solomon Islands through its plant SolTuna, where it provides socioeconomic benefits to local communities through employment and community-focused initiatives. The company can increase accountability by developing similar strategies and approaches for all locations where its operations affect the local communities.