FAQ

What is the Global Salmon Initiative (GSI)?

The Global Salmon Initiative (GSI) is a leadership initiative established by global farmed salmon producers focused on making significant progress on industry sustainability. The GSI is committed to fully realizing a shared goal of providing a highly sustainable source of healthy food to feed a growing global population, while minimizing our environmental footprint, and continuing to improve our social contribution.

What percentage of the industry is involved?

Of the global farmed salmon producers (based on production by tonnage), approximately 50% have committed to the GSI.

What are the GSI principles?

  • Significant progress on sustainability
  • Transparency
  • Cooperation

Objectives:

  1. Bring together global farmed salmon producers and other industry stakeholders to strive towards significantly improving the sustainability of salmon farming
  2. Cooperation to continue to outperform other sources of animal protein in terms of contribution to human health, environmental responsibility, and efficient feed conversion rate, and to be widely recognized for this accomplishment
  3. Achieve the highest standards of corporate citizenship in the regions where members operate
  4. Translate environmental and social sustainability into greater economic sustainability through enhanced social license and market acceptance.

How does the GSI define sustainability?

The GSI is focused on the three pillars of sustainability: environmental, social responsibility, and economic sustainability.

How will this initiative make the industry more sustainable?

Through global collaboration and research, pooling of resources, and sharing of knowledge, the GSI aims to make significant improvements across the industry in terms of social responsibility, environmental impact, and social contributions. The GSI unites approximately 50% of farmed salmon producers, and through combined effort and full transparency, seeks to make significant improvements in the sustainability of salmon farming.

How do we know this is not just another green-wash exercise?

This initiative is about significant improvement in sustainability. It is not about satisfaction with the status quo. Transparent reporting will drive accountability for results.

What projects is the GSI working on?

As members of the GSI we have chosen to focus our attention on areas where we will strive to make significant improvements and progress through combined efforts. Currently the GSI is focusing on three areas of interest: biosecurity, feed and nutrition, and meeting industry standards:

Will the GSI look to work on additional projects in the future?

The GSI will re-evaluate the status of the industry and project development at each of our bi-annual meetings, and will decide on a project-by-project basis which initiatives to assign resources to.

How does the GSI decide which projects to proceed with?

We continually seek the advice of our stakeholders and aim to focus attention on issues affecting the whole industry. As GSI members we are committed to projects where we can make significant improvements, and improve the sustainability of the industry.

How will the GSI measure its progress?

As GSI members, we have made a commitment to achieving ASC certification across 100% of our farms by 2020, and as part of this we have chosen to use the ASC standard as a reference point for our progress as we work to accomplish this goal. Using the ASC standard as a benchmark, we have developed the GSI Sustainability Report, which is updated on an annual basis across all key indicators allowing everyone to follow our progress.

As an initiative we also review our progress internally twice a year, and continue to seek the guidance of our Partners and Friends to ensure we are heading in the right direction.

What are these sustainability indicators?

Using the Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) standard as a benchmark, the GSI reports transparently on key sustainability indicators every year in the following areas:

  • Use of marine ingredients in feed
  • Disease management and prevention
  • Number of fish escapes per year
  • Number of fish mortalities per year
  • Any local environmental impact
  • Chemical inputs
  • Social impacts (i.e. labor and community interactions)
  • Certifications and environmental licenses

Reporting on additional areas may be added as the initiative proceeds and new priorities arise over time.

What is the timeline for success?

The GSI is working towards continuous industry improvements, with the aim of implementing significant change as soon as appropriate.

Does the GSI aim to replace existing sustainability initiatives?

No. The GSI’s will work with existing initiatives to maximize forward progress.

Is the intention to create a new sustainability standard?

No. The GSI will support its members in reaching the highest industry standards.

How does the GSI relate to national/regional associations/industry bodies?

The GSI has been working closely with national associations/industry bodies from the outset of the initiative and will continue to do so. We see collaboration with the national associations as crucial to the success of improving the sustainability of the industry.

Does the GSI have any company affiliations?

The GSI is an independent initiative, with member companies from the salmon farming industry, and Associate Members from the feed and pharmaceutical industries. The GSI as a collective also consults with global stakeholders who provide an advisory role towards GSI projects.

Will the deliberations be limited to members or will external stakeholders have a serious voice?

The GSI fully realizes that success will only come through cooperation and involvement with other stakeholders in every stage of the decision-making and planning process.

Who is not participating, and why?

The GSI is open to all farmed salmon producers that share its vision and are willing to work to achieve its objectives. As the GSI is always evolving and adapting to current industry needs, we seek the support of our fellow producers and stakeholders who share the vision of making significant industry improvements.

Is the GSI open to companies indirectly involved in the salmon farming industry?

Membership is made up of farmed salmon producers, but we welcome the support of other organizations involved in the industry.

How is the membership of the GSI determined?

The GSI is open to all global farmed salmon producers who share the GSI vision, who are willing to work to achieve its objectives, and who are willing to adhere to the principles and commitments stated.

Who are the GSI’s Associate Members, and what is their role in the initiative?

The GSI has eight Associate Members from the feed and pharmaceutical industries. The GSI members and Associate Members work together on projects where they see the benefits of shared knowledge and expertise in supporting accelerated progress against shared objectives.

Feed Associates Members:

Pharmaceutical Associate Members:

How does the GSI decide on its Associate Members?

GSI Associate Members are organizations that have a shared interest in the continued growth and prosperity of the farmed salmon industry, and share in the GSI’s commitment to improvements in sustainable salmon farming. The Associate Members must also be willing to work with the GSI members on projects where they have shared objectives, and be willing and able to work collaboratively, sharing knowledge and expertise to support progress.

The GSI is open to considering possible new Associate Members if they feel they are able to support and contribute to the work of the GSI, and can commit to the principles of sustainability, transparency, and cooperation. All possible Associate Members will be reviewed by the GSI CEO board on a case-by-case basis.

Does the GSI have any company affiliations?

The GSI is an independent initiative, with member companies from the salmon farming industry, and Associate Members from the feed and pharmaceutical industries. The GSI as a collective also consults with global stakeholders who provide an advisory role towards GSI projects.

What happens if individual companies do not adhere to the GSI principles or obligations?

Failure to adhere to the agreed GSI principles or by failing to conform to either the financial or resource obligations of the GSI may result in a member company’s membership being terminated.

How is the GSI funded?

Each member of the GSI contributes to financing the initiative.

Who do I contact for further information?

Further information may be received by contacting the secretariat AXON at info@globalsalmoninitiative.org