Mexican Pacific shrimp - bottom trawl

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Overview

The Pacific Ocean is the most productive fishing area for Mexico, providing approximately 75 percent of seafood catch by volume, and accounting for most of the country’s seafood exports by value. The Mexican Pacific Ocean industrial shrimp fishery is the most important fishery for the country; having the greatest economic value. It is also the highest-ranked fishery in terms of number of vessels and directly-connected jobs. The fishery is also the country’s third largest by volume with annual landings of approximately 42,000 tonnes, 70% of which is produced by the bottom-trawl Fleet.

At the same time, the industrial shrimp fishery has some ecologically damaging effects on the habitats where it harvests. For decades, the use of antiquated gear and an increase in the number and the size of vessels have exacted a heavy toll on the environment. Prior to the fleet reduction ten years ago, it was estimated that high levels of bycatch had resulted in the wasteful discard of tens of thousands of tonnes of approximately 600 marine species. Fortunately, in the last two decades, the Mexican Pacific Ocean bottom-trawl shrimp fishery has implemented major improvements toward achieving sustainability - the fleet reduction is by far the biggest change implemented. Thanks to the federal government's buyout program which began in 2006, the fleet was reduced by 50 percent and today has the same number of vessels that it had in the 1970s. The shrimp fishing gear has also evolved significantly. All vessels in the fleet now use low-weight materials that have reduced their drag weight by 90 percent. Furthermore, besides the mandatory use of Turtle Excluder Devices (TEDs), the fishery regulations require mandatory use of bycatch reduction devices (BRDs) and establishes a maximum net size. The fishery also requires the use of bigger mesh sizes to foster selective harvesting.

Fishery administration and enforcement have also improved. All shrimp fishing vessels are now monitored 24/7 by the fisheries agency CONAPESCA through a vessel monitoring system (VMS) capable of identifying incursions to restricted areas and fishing activities in prohibited zones. Producers compliance has also strengthened as a result of the implementation of procurement policies subject to third independent party audits based upon the control document approach designed by Sustainable Fisheries Partnership.

 

 

The Pacific Ocean is the most productive fishing area for Mexico, providing approximately 75 percent of seafood catch by volume, and accounting for most of the country’s seafood exports by value. The Mexican Pacific Ocean industrial shrimp fishery

FIP Objective(s) 

By the summer of 2020, the FIP aims to achieve a management performance in accordance with the MSC standard indicators for sustainable fisheries. To achieve that goal, the FIP is working towards completing the following objectives:

  • Initiating continuous assessments of all shrimp stocks targeted by the fishery
  • Improving transparency in monitoring, research, and decision-making processes for fishery management
  • Evaluating means to reduce the fishery environmental impacts
  • Maintaining the fishery full compliance with the regulatory framework while improving transparency and accountability 
FIP Type 
Comprehensive
FIP Stage 
Stage 3: FIP Implementation
Start and Projected End Dates
August, 2013
August, 2020
Next Progress Report Due 
Friday, August 31, 2018
Species 
Common Name 
Blue Shrimp
Scientific Name 
Litopenaeus stylirostris
Additional Names 
Camarón azul, Pacific blue shrimp
Common Name 
Brown Shrimp
Scientific Name 
Farfantepenaeus californiensis
Additional Names 
Camarón café, Yellowleg shrimp
Common Name 
White Shrimp
Scientific Name 
Litopenaeus vannamei
Additional Names 
Camarón blanco, whiteleg shrimp
Gear Type 
Bottom Trawl
Location
FAO Major Fishing Area
Area 77 (Pacific, Eastern Central)
Exclusive Economic Zones
Country 
Mexico
Additional Attributes 
The fishery occurs in the Gulf of California, the West coast of Baja California and the Gulf of Tehuantepec
Country Flag of Vessel 
Mexico
Regional Fisheries Management Organization
Volume
FIP Volume 
23,000 metric tons
Total Fishery Volume 
28,000 metric tons
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FIP at a Glance

14% 64% 21%
August 01, 2013
50% 32% 18%
Progress Rating

A - Advanced Progress
Reserved for comprehensive FIPs that have a Stage 4 or 5 result within the past 12 months.

B - Good Progress
A FIP that has achieved a Stage 4 or 5 in more than 12 months AND Stage 3 activity in the last year; OR a basic FIP that has achieved Stage 4 or 5 achievements within the past 12 months.

C - Some Recent Progress
A FIP that has achieved a Stage 4 or 5 result in more than 12 (but less than 24) months but has not generated a Stage 3 result within the past 12 months OR a FIP younger than a year that has never achieved a Stage 4 or 5 result but has completed a Stage 3 activity.

D - Some Past Progress
A FIP for which the most recent publicly reported Stage 4 or 5 result is more than 24 (but less than 30) months.

E - Negligible Progress
A FIP older than a year that has not reported a Stage 4 or 5 result in more than 30 month (but less than 36) months; OR a FIP younger than 1 year that has not reported a Stage 3 activity.

The ratings are currently derived by SFP from publicly available data on FIP websites, including FisheryProgress.org, and are determined using the following methodology: View PDF
C Some Recent Progress
Actions Complete
  • Complete
  • Incomplete
Next Update Due FisheryProgress requires a FIP to provide update reports every six months, and two missed reports will render the FIP inactive. If a report is overdue, this date will appear red.
Aug 2018
Target End Date
Aug 2020

FIP Leads

Organization Name 
Meridian Products
Organization Type 
Industry
Primary Contact 
Rick Martin
Organization Name 
Ocean Garden Products Inc.
Organization Type 
Industry
Primary Contact 
Lance Leonard
Organization Name 
Productores del Mar de Mexico
Organization Type 
Industry
Primary Contact 
Miguel Rousse
Organization Name 
Pesca Responsable y Comercio Justo
Organization Type 
Consultant
Primary Contact 
Juan Manuel Garcia
Enter the public contact information for the leader of the FIP. This information will be displayed on FisheryProgress.org for users who want to contact the FIP.