Ecotrust Canada is partnering with local fishermen and fish buyers to create a seafood tracing and marketing program that will help them meet upcoming regulatory requirements, reports Sarah Douziech in the Westerly News.

Ecotrust’s local fisheries project manager said the overall aim of the project, called the Pacific to Plate initiative, is to create compliance and transparency in the fish supply chain.

The European Union legislated a requirement that all imported seafood be traceable back to the source by Jan. 1, 2010.

“That import rule will affect any of our Canadian fish that have an export market into the E.U.,” Laura Loucks said.

Loucks added that Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) is looking at implementing a similar regulatory requirement in Canada so there can be some transparency around food safety locally.

Ecotrust is concerned that with a potentially sweeping policy change like that, small-scale independent businesses will have increasingly unbearable costs.