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Greenpeace Japan, the 2020 Olympics, and Sustainable Seafood

SNA (Tokyo) — Greenpeace Japan calls on the nation to use the opportunity of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics to support sustainable seafood. A video by Sam King.


Kazue Komatsubara, Oceans Campaigner, Greenpeace Japan: The Olympics are an extraordinary opportunity to showcase the best of the country to the world. The aim for a responsible sourcing code for the Olympics in Tokyo is not only to provide sustainable seafood at the event itself but also to accelerate the sustainable seafood movement in Japan and beyond as a measure to combat illegal fishing practices. In fact, Japan is such a key player in terms of its volume of fishing, seafood consumption, and trading. However, with the currently drafted sourcing code for the Tokyo Olympics, it is very difficult to carry out Japan’s responsibility to meet the Olympics Games’ sustainable goals. Therefore, it’s very, very important for Japan to take responsibility and to demonstrate its leadership in sustainable sourcing purchasing. Looking at the current Japanese market, for example, supermarkets, any retailers, and restaurants, you can see endangered tuna species and eel species everywhere. It’s very important for consumers to show their willingness to buy sustainable seafood and also for companies to develop their own sustainable procurement policies. Those collective efforts will encourage organizers to improve the current code to meet sustainable Olympic goals. And to do that the criteria should aim to be at least as good as the London Olympics’ guidelines—preferably better. As the Olympics are such a great opportunity to show our culture and our values, if we successfully improve our seafood policy then this might have a positive impact on the entire seafood market in Japan and beyond. As the code development process is nearing its end the organizers have to improve their current code to meet the Olympic Games’ sustainable principles.

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