USAID Oceans Develops Guidance for Catch Documentation and Traceability System

USAID Oceans’ DEX Model is a decentralized approach to traceability data sharing and will facilitate the movement of data across the supply chain.

The Oceans and Fisheries Partnership (USAID Oceans) has completed a working draft of their Catch Documentation and Traceability System (CDTS) design document that will serve as a “blue print” for the system’s development. The document, entitled Catch Documentation and Traceability in Southeast Asia: Technical Concept and Specifications, or the CDT 201 for short, comes as a follow-up to the Conceptual Overview (the CDT 101) which presented the case for enhanced catch documentation and traceability and outline USAID Oceans’ approach.

The CDT201 brings together expertise from the USAID Oceans team, the Global Food Traceability Center, Future of Fish, and other leading traceability experts, and provides a blueprint for the system’s design and implementation. By releasing this document, USAID Oceans hopes to clearly and transparently share its proposed technical approach and specifications relating to the CDTS, as well as invite feedback and technical advice from interested agencies and organizations, including (but not limited to): regional partners SEAFDEC and CTI-CFF; U.S. government counterparts, including NOAA and the U.S. Department of the Interior; commercial stakeholders operating within the seafood supply chain; national regulators; private sector technology partners; international fishing and shipping industry partners; seafood certification organizations; technical and scientific organizations; and academia.

The CDT201 provides a comprehensive overview of current regulations and policies in place in Southeast Asia and importing countries, current traceability capabilities and initiatives, and introduces the seafood supply chain and its actors. USAID Oceans presents the technical considerations at work in CDTS implementation, including data capture methods throughout the supply chain, data capture opportunities, and standards requirements. The CDT201 provides an introduction to the USAID Oceans’ Data Exchange Server (DEX) Model—the Activity’s proposed solution for implemented digital traceability.

Summary of the DEX Model

The DEX Model was developed in response USAID Oceans’ need to design an intermediate solution that facilitates data movement across disparate nodes in the seafood supply chain. DEX is a decentralized approach to traceability data sharing and can be a physical or virtual (cloud-based) server that publishes web services that facilitate the movement of data across the supply chain.

The current vision is for each node in the supply chain to easily communicate electronically as the physical product moves from location to location. DEX is a physical or virtual server that is owned by the entity generating and hosting the critical tracking event, including supply chain companies, governments, or third parties. As long as the data are all encoded in the same way, these DEX will facilitate data movement across disparate nodes in the chain. Multiple DEX allows the seafood supply chain to make choices in how they track and interact with data.

Status of Working Draft

USAID Oceans, as of January 16, 2017, has distributed the working draft to the Partnership’s Technical Advisory Group and other cooperating partners for review and comment. Following the comment period, USAID Oceans will work to revise the CDT201 and will apply the implementation approach in the General Santos City and Bitung learning sites in 2017.

Download the Conceptual Overview (CDT 101).

A copy of the working draft can be provided upon request. Please email for more information.


Type: Project Update | Author: The Oceans and Fisheries Partnership | Date: 15 January, 2017 | Subject: Catch Documentation and Traceability, Ecosystems Approach to Fisheries Management, Human Welfare, Regional Coordination | Country: Regional