Vessel and fishery risk assessment

Fishery Risk Tool

Access to the SEA Alliance Fishery Risk Tool is a benefit for SEA Alliance member businesses.

The Tool (which was updated in 2023) uses data from several indices and ratings systems to produce a high-level baseline assessment of human rights risks in selected fisheries. The focus for assessment is human trafficking, forced labour, and child labour.

The risk tool comprises eight indicators:
1. Fishery governance and stock health
2. Flag of convenience
3. Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing
4. Known risk of abuse in seafood production
5. Global Slavery Index Fishing Risk
6. Alignment with international standards for protecting workers
7. Food Network for Ethical Trade (FNET)’s Country risk rating
8. Gallup’s Migrant Acceptance Index

A set of rules are applied to each indicator, which are scored from 0 to 10. For each fishery, an average risk score has then been calculated from 0 to 10, where 0 equals higher risk and 10 equals lower risk.

Globally, there is a higher risk of human and labour rights abuses occurring in fishing than in some other industries due to factors that include the difficult and dangerous nature of the work, the seasonal context within which fisheries often operate, and the difficulties of monitoring and enforcing labour rights at sea. Numerous other factors relating to the political, legal, socio-economic and environmental context in which a fishery operates, as well as differences at the individual supply chain level, contribute to the risk of human rights abuses occurring.

This assessment is intended to represent the first step in a risk assessment process conducted by businesses and does not constitute a thorough analysis of all factors likely to contribute to risk. Businesses using this assessment should not make a claim of having carried out human rights due diligence based on the sole use of this assessment.

SEA Alliance source vessel analysis

This analysis is available to the SEA Alliance member businesses who contributed to the study.

As part of a supply chain mapping exercise SEA Alliance members were invited to submit information on the >10m UK vessels from which
they source fish. The ma
ndatory information requested was vessel name, vessel ID/PLN, home and administrative ports, and FPO membership. In addition optional information was requested on vessel owner, fishing gear, IMO number, main species caught purchased, and total annual catch in tonnes. The vessel list was analysed with the primary objective of investigating vessels which supply multiple

In total 761 unique vessels were identified as supplying material to Members, representing around 71% of the UK >10m fishing fleet. Of these, 438 vessels supplied more than one Member (“2+ vessels”) and 134 supplied five or more Members (“5+ vessels”)

Further work is now being undertaken to look at a subgroup of 30 vessels supplying >1 member, selected randomly, which will be put through the Global Fishing Watch Vessel Viewer and Forced Labour Risk Model.

The report from this methodology will be produced for August 2024. Participating members will then meet to discuss potential next steps.

To find out more

If you would like to find out more about these SEA Alliance resources please email


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