Animal Rebellion paints the Marine Stewardship Council red to demand the end of fishing

Photo of animal Rebellion activists sit on a step with placards at the entrance to the Marine Stewardship Council. The building is normally white but has been stained bright red.
  • Protestors from Animal Rebellion have used fire extinguishers to spray the London headquarters of  the Marine Stewardship Council blood red and have dumped red paint inside the office.
  • They are holding placards reading ‘MSC – Stop Certifying Destruction’ and ‘Protect the Seas – End Fishing’.
  • Animal Rebellion are demanding that all MSC certified fisheries stop all fishing to stop ocean destruction. 
  • Animal Rebellion demands a just transition for workers to a sustainable plant-based food system.

Four people have sprayed the headquarters of the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) blood red, to call on the organisation to stop certifying the fishing industry and support a just transition to sustainable industries.

Protestors from the non-violent direct action group Animal Rebellion used modified fire extinguishers to spray the building red, before sitting down in the paint holding placards reading Protect the Seas – End Fishing and MSC – Stop Certifying Destruction.

Orla Coghlan, a spokesperson for the organisation who attended the action today, said: “Evidence has shown that our oceans could be empty as soon as 2048 because of fishing. The MSC has a responsibility in their claims to be sustainable. They have a duty to revive the ocean when species are going extinct. The solution to fishless seas and ocean acidification is obvious: the government and the Marine Stewardship Council need to fund a just transition from fishing to sustainable plant-based agriculture, such as seaweed and legumes. The MSC are responsible for ensuring ‘sustainable’ fishing, however scientific evidence has shown that it is not possible to sustainably fish in our seas.”

Animal Rebellion demands that all MSC certified fisheries stop fishing immediately in order to reverse the depletion of our oceans. They also demand MSC to stop handing out ‘ecolabels’ to supermarkets and fisheries that have been proven to contribute to marine destruction.

This protest follows increased scrutiny of the Marine Stewardship Council following the 2021 film Seaspiracy, which exposed troubling systemic flaws in the labelling scheme. The film, which was released a year ago this Thursday, pointed to the inherent conflict of interest involved: the MSC is funded by the licensing fees paid by certified fisheries and supermarkets, a model that other labelling schemes such as RSPCA Assured and Red Tractor also adopt.

In 2016 a leaked report from WWF who co-founded the MSC in 1997 pointed to “troubling, systemic flaws,” in the certification scheme while last year the director of the WWF Mediterranean marine initiative stated that he “would not trust all of the fisheries to be sustainable.”

“Despite increasing warnings of imminent climate catastrophe, these certifiers continue to promote these destructive industries.” Said Animal Rebellion spokesperson, Harley McDonald-Eckersall. “We’re here today to demand that they stop the hypocrisy and stop condoning an industry that is destroying the planet and killing the animals they claim to protect. A fully just, sustainable plant-based food system is the only way forward.”

What’s next?

Animal Rebellion is demanding that the Marine Stewardship Council stops all fishing in its fisheries and stop handing out ‘ecolabels’ to supermarkets and fisheries that have been proven to contribute to marine destruction.

Animal Rebellion is a mass movement using nonviolent civil disobedience to call for a just, sustainable plant-based food system.

Interview opportunities and photos

For interviews, photo opportunities or further information, contact the following spokespeople:

Harley McDonald-Eckersall: 07 869 287 923 (at the protest)

Orla Coghlan: 07 414 838 444 (at the protest)

Omaid Hiwaizi : 07 956 375 455  (back office)

Photos: https://pics.io/search?tagId=6237175d7a86c5001a6a1c12

Email: pressoffice@animalrebellion.org

Website: animalrebellion.org

Animal Rebellion paints the Marine Stewardship Council red to demand the end of fishing

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