US Customs holds up Taiwanese tuna longliner’s catch over forced labor concerns

Posted By Stop Illegal Fishing:8th Feb, 2019: Labour

US customs officials have blocked all tuna harvested from the Taiwanese vessel Tunago No. 61, and products manufactured with its fish, from entering the US due to concerns over the possible use of forced labor.

Customs and Border Patrol said in a release that an order effective Feb. 4 requires the detention of the vessel’s products at all US ports of entry.

“Importers of detained shipments are provided an opportunity to export their shipments or demonstrate that the merchandise was not produced with forced labor,” the agency said.

It did not detail the allegations involving the vessel.

However, the advocacy group Greenpeace has previously accused Tunago Fishery, which Undercurrent News sources identified as a past supplier of Thai Union Group, of past labor abuses.

The 2016 murder of a Tunago skipper is a central part of a 2018 Greenpeace report critical of the sector, with the group then linking this to Taiwan’s  Fong Chun Formosa Fishery Company. Greenpeace claims the skipper had been abusing the crew, which drove them to kill him. No mention is made of the link between Tunago and Thai Union, who Greenpeace signed a high-profile agreement with in 2017. The companies have disputed any allegations of wrongdoing.

Source: Undercurrent

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