The Fisheries Improvement Program (FIP) mangrove crab commodity unit in Kei Islands, Southeast Maluku Regency has entered a new chapter. After the acknowledgement of their new membership, the Fish For Good project which was initiated by MSC Indonesia also invited several Indonesian actors to collaborate, including NGOs and scholars. This project aims to improve potential fishery units in Indonesia prior to entering fishery condition to MSC (Marine Stewardship Council) pre-assessment standard, along with other appointed independent institutions, and to provide FIP action pan composed and ratified by fisheries target management stakeholders.
This project is a big opportunity for FIP mangrove crab commodity unit Kei Islands. The growth of FIP target achievement from 2016 to today shows a promising result, whereas the BMT (Benchmark Monitoring Tools) Index score rose from 0.21 (2018) to 0.64 (2020) done by Certification Assessment Body (CAB) Bio-Inspecta. The result showed that a serious improvement in the majority of indicator principles is needed to align first MSC’s principle, the sustainability of stock. To create a sustainable mangrove crab fishing, the fishermen community in Hoat Sorbay Bay under Regional Law of Ohoi Evu Village 2018 had done several initiatives. Despite the spirit of improvement, the implementation of these initiatives is still weak and need a lot of review and consultation from related stakeholders.
However, the result of the pre-assessment with CAB is a good start for the stakeholders in Maluku, especially in Southeast Maluku Regency, in improving the implementation of FIP mangrove crab. Based on the scoping from the results, we can conclude that there are five main actions in FIP implementation, such as: a) Comprehensive supervision and evaluation on the status of mangrove crab stock as the basis in composing fishing strategy; b) Supervision on reared and wild alternative fisheries; c) Specific supervision on fishery activities to habitat condition and evaluation on the impact of risks of ecosystem; d) Program synchronization with related institutions through consultation and participation for maintenance issues, and; e) The implementation of MCS (Monitoring, Control, and Surveillance). As a follow up plan, the forum had agreed on discussing more detailed FIP mangrove crab action plan draft, optimization of the role of Pokja (Kelompok Kerja; team work) that involves multi-stakeholders, and the integration of FIP mangrove crab in maintaining conservation area in Kei Islands, Southeast Maluku.
“Kei Islands is a conservation area and this fact aligns with MSC’s principle on sustainable fisheries. (We hope that) this activity can amplify stakeholders’ knowledge about FIP. We also hope that (aspects that still have) low score can be improved to meet the full assessment (standard),” said Abdul Haris, Head of Department of Marine Affairs and Fisheries, Maluku Province in his opening remarks. His statement was in par with the direction from Trian Yunanda, Director of Fish Resources, Ministy of Marine Affairs and Fisheries of Indonesia who stated that there’s a shift in market’s interest in high value goods like products with MSC ecolabel, whereas the label can improve transaction process and add value to the business, and an uprising collaborative maintenance effort from all stakeholders in supervising the FIP activity towards sustainable mangrove crab fisheries.