The WWF is run at a local level by the following offices...
- WWF Global
- Central African Republic
- Central America
- Democratic Republic of the Congo
- European Policy Office
WWF International’s Living Blue Planet report was released in September of this year, revealing some disturbing and alarming facts about the world’s oceans. Analysing fluctuations in 5,829 populations of 1,234 marine species between 1970 and 2012, the report shows a devastating average decline of 49 per cent in their population sizes. The major drivers of this decline are the overexploitation of these species for human consumption and the impacts associated with their harvest.
As the second-largest per capita seafood consumer in Asia in 2011 and the seventh-largest in the world, Hong Kong has a unique opportunity to turn the tide and reverse this sad situation.
On 2 December 2015, WWF-Hong Kong held a Sustainable Seafood Business Seminar called “Sustainable Seafood for Hong Kong – Every Bite Makes a Difference”. The seminar had several aims: to foster a stronger sustainable seafood network within the catering sector, to summarize the advances made in the seafood movement sparked by WWF’s unique Seafood Guide, and to create much-needed synergy to build momentum and create a favourable environment across markets and industries which will further popularize sustainable seafood across Hong Kong.
The seminar attracted 78 participants from 51 companies and organizations, including chefs and representatives of senior management from hotel chains, catering group, Western restaurant groups, clubhouses, theme park, retailers, Hong Kong Government, catering, chefs & industrial associations.
Business leaders from these industries shared their thoughts on a number of topics with the audience. Samuel Kwong, Group Sustainable Development Manager for John Swire and Sons (H.K.) Limited, shared how the group creates sustainable seafood links among its various subsidiaries and works with stakeholders to encourage sustainable fisheries.
Later, Norbert Tan (General Manager – Supply Chain and Quality Assurance Maxim’s Caterers Limited), William Lau (Senior Manager – Food Procurement Department Maxim’s Caterers Limited), Natalie Chan (Director, Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability – The Hongkong and Shanghai Hotels Limited) and Marco Avitabile (Regional Vice President, Food and Beverage, Asia Pacific – Hyatt) shared the journeys of their respective catering and hotel groups and how they are each formulating concrete actions to improve seafood sustainability along the supply chain – locally, regionally and globally. Executive chefs Florian Trento (Group Executive Chef – The Peninsula Hotels) and Marcus Mathyssek (Executive Chef – Grand Hyatt Hong Kong) added additional flavour to the discussion by sharing their insights into the unique challenges they face and the approaches they took to overcome these issues.
Representatives from the government including Dr PM So, the Deputy Director of the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD) and Simon Chan, the AFCD’s Assistant Director (Conservation) shed light on the government’s pragmatic approach towards sustainable seafood and linked this to the importance of promoting a sustainable lifestyle to the public. Merlinda Ng, (Director of Sales and Marketing – Worldwide Seafood Limited), Terry Tsui (Director – The Meat Square) and Keith Tsui (Managing Director – New Bon Marine (HK) Ltd) talked about the increasing uptake of sustainable seafood in the supply and retail sectors and how public and business engagement activities such as Sustainable Seafood Week, organized by WWF-Hong Kong earlier this year, can create much-needed traction in the industry and market.
“WWF is glad to see catering businesses in Hong Kong take an increasing leading role in incorporating seafood sustainability into their business operations. Only through such action can humanity be guaranteed seafood resources for generations to come”, said Adam Koo, WWF-Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Officer.
“Despite the challenges the industry still faces in terms of the diversity of choice, stability of supply and cost differences, it is obvious that the Hong Kong market is increasingly receptive to sustainable seafood. However, we need more partners to join forces with us if we truly want to make sustainable seafood mainstream, and make it more accessible to all people in Hong Kong”, shared Dr Allen To, Assistant Manager for WWF-Hong Kong’s Footprint Programme.
Since 2010, WWF-Hong Kong has been working with major catering and supplier partners in town to deliver an Ocean Friendly Menu and an Ocean Friendly Catalogue. In recent years we have extended our seafood work, focusing on customized time-bound action planning with strategic catering partners. The organization will continue to leverage on the positive aspects of the growing sustainable seafood market, both in terms of local consumption and as a trade hub, to bring about subtle transformations in the seafood supply chain which will result in positive conservation impacts throughout Asia Pacific.
WWF-Hong Kong would like to extend our sincere thanks to The Hongkong and Shanghai Hotels Limited for sponsoring both the venue and the food and beverage service for this important event.