The Gulf of Maine Research Institute is a non-profit marine science center located in Portland, Maine. The Gulf of Maine Research Institute (GMRI) catalyzes solutions to the complex challenges of ocean stewardship and economic growth in the Gulf of Maine bioregion. Their dynamic fusion of science, education, and community gives GMRI range to effect change from multiple directions, while their objectivity and commitment to collaboration makes GMRI the go-to organization for marine communities grappling with contentious issues, management transitions, and new business systems.
Sustainable Seafood Initiative
The Gulf of Maine Research Institute (GMRI) developed the Sustainable Seafood Initiative to strengthen the economic and ecological sustainability of the Gulf of Maine seafood industry. The landscape of marine fisheries in the Gulf of Maine region is constantly changing and no singular approach will resolve these multifaceted issues. The Sustainable Seafood Initiative recognizes the complexity in these matters and applies an objective science based approach when scrutinizing and developing innovative sustainable strategies that encompass an ecosystem-based approach.
The Sustainable Seafood Initiative works with a diverse group of stakeholders, including harvesters, processors, retailers, and conservation organizations, to meet the unique challenges and opportunities of the Gulf of Maine fisheries and coastal communities. By working with all parts of the supply chain, the Initiative seeks to create a system that rewards fisheries, farms, and seafood companies that are committed to reducing their ecological impacts. Through efforts such as the Gulf of Maine Responsibly Harvested program, the Sustainable Seafood Initiative seeks to reward current sustainable practices as well as those efforts under continuous improvement.
The Gulf of Maine Research Institute (GMRI) Sustainable Seafood Culinary Partners Program provides restaurant proprietors with clear and concise information around current Gulf of Maine seafood sustainability issues. Establishments that participate in the Culinary Partners program have committed to serving and promoting locally-sourced, responsibly harvested seafood from the Gulf of Maine region. In addition, these Culinary Partners participate in sustainable seafood education seminars, are provided with objective seafood information, and set annual goals around improving the sustainability of their business operations. The Culinary Partners program enables consumers to recognize and support restaurants that are striving to promote responsibly harvested seafood from fishermen and purveyors in the Gulf of Maine.
Gulf of Maine Responsibly Harvested Program
The Gulf of Maine Responsibly Harvested branding program enables market differentiation of Gulf of Maine seafood products that meet important criteria around traceability and responsible harvest.
The Gulf of Maine Responsibly Harvested branding program motivates improvements in the sustainability of the seafood industry by capitalizing on consumer preferences for responsibly harvested products that are from a known place. Research has shown that consumers prefer to know where their seafood food is harvested and are concerned with the sustainability of seafood. The program empowers consumers to support seafood products they feel good about by identifying products that meet the standard's criteria with the Gulf of Maine Responsibly Harvested seal.
All of the products that carry the Gulf of Maine Responsibly Harvested seal are verified by the Gulf of Maine Research Institute against criteria around responsible harvest. Further, all products achieve third-party verification that products are traceable to the Gulf of Maine region.