USAID Oceans Presents New Site Data to General Santos Stakeholders

Workshop participants work together to identify key priorities to establish sustainable fisheries that are supported by catch documentation and traceability and informed fisheries management plans.

This February, stakeholders gathered in General Santos City, Philippines (February 21-23, 2017) to attend USAID Oceans’ Stakeholder Validation Workshop. The three-day workshop presented recent research results and findings for discussion and agreement among a range of stakeholders, which included local and national government, industry, non-profit organizations, fisherfolk, private sector, and academia. As one of USAID Oceans’ program learning sites, a series of research studies were conducted over the last year to gather critical information that will inform the design of the program’s Catch Documentation and Traceability (CDT) System and supporting program interventions. Research included:

  • Value Chain Analysis on Tuna Fisheries
  • Rapid Appraisal for Fisheries Management
  • Gender Analysis
  • Labor Analysis

The workshop was attended by over 120 participants, each involved in General Santos’ fisheries in varying ways. The workshop allowed USAID Oceans and its subcontractors who conducted the research (Verité, WinFish, WorldFish, and Bold Native Advisors) to present their research results to participants for review, agreement, and incorporation of any further considerations that should be made and reflected in final research results. Research was conducted in 2016 and into early 2017 and aimed to collect accurate, up to date information on value chains, fisheries management, and human welfare conditions to allow USAID Oceans to develop information implementation strategies.

Research findings were well received by workshop participants and provided a venue for engaged discussion on the benefits of enhanced CDT and need for effective fisheries management plans. Participants echoed the need for CDT and action to improve sustainability and protect General Santos’ resources. A local resident who works to organize local fishers to empower them and protect their rights stated, when asked about the importance of the research presented,

“The industry here is serious about complying with [measures to combat] illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing. It should be well considered that there are international buyers of fish products in the U.S. and EU which are commissioning research to see to it that General Santos is complying with traceability, labor, and human welfare standards. In other words, the world is now looking at us, and quick steps must be taken, otherwise the fishing industry here could contribute to its own demise.”

Workshop participants provided additional perspective and validated research findings over the three-day meeting.

Summary results of research studies and analyses can be found in the research profiles below. Full reports will be released and made available on this website upon their completion.

Value Chain Summary

Fisheries Management Profile

Gender Analysis

Labor Analysis