Criteria in the Seafood standards reviewed focused on setting environmental, rather than social or economic standards. While this reflects the natural primacy of ecosystem management as a driver for certification historically in the sector, the relative absence of criteria on social and economic issues is notable given the importance of seafood production across the developing world. Below is a listing of the average intensity along social, environmental and economic indicators per aquaculture and wild catch standards as a group.
One of the hallmarks of voluntary standards is their ability to allow a wide spectrum of stakeholders participate in the rule-making, enforcement and management processes. Although seafood standards generally include non-traditional stakeholders in their management processes, developing country representation at the board level remains systematically low across the vast majority of initiatives.