All Australian Standards developed by FRDC will demonstrate a net benefit and therefore have an overall positive impact on Australia’s seafood industry. This means that all FRDC developed Australian Standards must provide a value or benefit that exceeds the costs to the seafood industry with associated action plans to implement continuous improvement to ensure this is met.
Public, consumer and stakeholder confidence is vital to the well-being of Australia’s seafood industry.
Australian Standards are not legal documents. However, when a government references a standard in legislation, it becomes mandatory. An Australian Standard does have status and is recognised as being a credible document. Usage of the names included in the Australian Fish Names Standard is not mandated in Australia but is listed in the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code - Standard 2.2.3 - Fish and Fish Products as an advisory note (see https://www.legislation.gov.au/Details/F2011C00569)
Standard fish names removes confusion, strengthens consumer confidence, creates market efficiencies and consistency, underpins effective fisheries monitoring and improves management of food fraud / food safety.
The use of standard fish names achieves outcomes that are consistent with the aims of industry and governments:
1 Improved monitoring and stock assessment enhances the sustainability of fisheries resources.
2 Increased consistency and efficiency in seafood marketing to improve consumer confidence and industry profitability.
3 Improved accuracy and consistency in trade descriptions enables consumers to make more informed choices when purchasing seafood and reduces the potential for misleading and deceptive conduct.
4 More efficient management of seafood related public health incidents and food safety through improved labelling and species identification reduces public health risk.
Within the next decade, the AFNS must:
• Be all inclusive including increased stakeholder awareness
• Improve the AFNS database to ensure all data is current
• Meet stakeholder expectation
• Be world’s best practice
• Be a national benchmark for sustainability
• Be part of an ongoing continuous improvement processes
• Be a transparent process to create trust
This work builds on the following FRDC funded projects:
• 2012-209, “Develop and promote the Australian Fish Names Standard (AS-5300) and ensurereaccreditation as a Standards Development Organisation [Michelle Christoe, SSA Executive Officer–novated to
• FRDC 2012-209.40, “Develop and promote the Australian Fish Names Standard (AS-5300) andensure reaccreditation as a Standards Development Organisation” [Alan Snow Konsulting]
• FRDC 2015-210, “FRDC resource: Australian Fish Names Standard (AS-5300)” [Alan Snow Konsulting].
The operating procedures of the Fish Names Committee have continued to improve, and proposed amendments have been evaluated in a highly rigorous and professional manner.
The list of approved names in the Australian Fish Names Standard has continued to expand to meet stakeholder needs through harmonising with the Status of Australian Fish Stocks (SAFS) reports and the addition of commercially important invertebrate species.
It has been twenty years since the Fish Names process commenced through Seafood Services Australia (SSA). As such, it is an opportunity to consider what has been achieved in twenty years and what is still to be achieved.