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MSC answers NGO criticism of its labor requirements

MSC defends its updated labor requirements.

The Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) responded to Greenpeace, the International Labor Rights Forum and other human rights and environmental organizations' recent criticism of the MSC's updated labor requirements.

The revised labor requirements in the MSC's Chain of Custody are problematic in assessing high-risk countries and the ineffectiveness of the labor audit programs for those high-risk countries, said a statement signed by Conservation International, the Freedom Fund, Greenpeace,the International Labor Rights Forum, Human Rights Watch and eight other groups.

Greenpeace, others blast new MSC labor requirements

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"Forced and child labor is an industry-wide issue with no quick or easy solution," an MSC spokesperson told IntraFish. "The new measures introduced by the MSC are part of a series of updates to both the MSC Chain of Custody standard and MSC Fisheries Certification Process to help address forced and child labor in the seafood industry."

The MSC claims the Chain of Custody's risk indicators and audit programs were both selected through multi-stakeholder and are globally recognized for assessing labor risks in the industry.

"The MSC is not looking to create a separate social standard, and we will continue to work with existing social standard setters to strengthen best practice and support new solutions to tackle this issue," the spokesperson said.

Going forward, the council will continue engaging with the International Labor Rights Forum, initiatives such as the Seafood Task Force, the Seafood Working Group and others to provide solutions to labor violations in the industry.

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