Europeanization of tuna governance through brand and retail strategies (BESTTuna subproject 3c)

This subproject addresses the gap in knowledge related to market-led governance strategies for the sustainable production of canned tuna imported to Europe – the largest canned tuna market in the world.


More specifically the research will address the emergence of private regulation of tuna in Europe vis-à-vis the role of the EU one the one hand enabling private regulation, while at the same time centralizing control over standardization of food sustainability. This project is therefore interested in elaborating the role of „hybridized‟ forms of environmental regulation in Europe and the implications of exporting such modes of governance to fish producing regions such as the Coral Triangle and Western Pacific - a region already under European influence through preferential trade agreements and economic partnership agreements, in addition to European investment in value chain regulation by retailers, brands and third party certification.

The study will be guided by questions that explore retail and brand strategies in Europe for sustainable tuna and how they are influenced by EU regulation, the CSR policies of European supermarkets and how their definitions of sustainability inform purchasing practices for their private labels, the influence of MSC certification on wider EU discussion over environmental standards and labelling, and finally, the extent to which „hybridised‟ forms of public-private value chain arrangements are apparent over European led tuna governance in the Western Pacific.

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