Op-ed: MRAG Americas Vice President Graeme Parkes stresses value of third-party audits.

December 9, 2022

ISSF President Susan Jackson sat down recently with conformity assessment body MRAG Americas Vice President Graeme Parkes to discuss the ISSF audit and compliance process. Read the article at www.seafoodsource.com.

MRAG Americas goes kayaking and paddle boarding in St. Petersburg, FL!

Updated: October 2022

From Left: Back row: Bob Trumble; Oleg Martens; Bryan Belay; Ben Hannah; Nick Hahlbeck; Clara Robison; Erin Wilson; Erin Hrastar; Carolina Vargas; Keith Stern-Pirlot; From Left front row: Amanda Stern-Pirlot; Jennie Harrington; Debra Welsh; Michealene Corlett; Haley Tomberlin; Monica Valle; Susan Alcorn. Not pictured: Andy Rosenberg; Graeme Parkes; Marcie Malone, Eileen Bautista

MRAG Americas completes first certification in North America under the FISH Standard for Crew

MRAG Americas auditors awarded the certification after extensive policy and procedure review, on-site vessel inspections, and face-to-face interviews of crew members.

FISH Standard APA Certification
APA FISH Crew Press Release

Changes at MRAG Americas

Updated: August 18, 2022

MRAG Americas has made several important and exciting organizational changes. We have established a new Executive Team, modified our company structure to bring all our third party certification work under a single Division, and created several new positions, recruiting from both within and outside the company. These and other changes are reflected on our website www.mragamericas.com.

Executive Team

Our new Executive Team is Graeme Parkes, Jennie Harrington, Amanda Stern-Pirlot and Debra Welsh. The Executive Team has oversight of all day-to-day actions and decision making required to run projects and maintain company processes. The Team will work closely on company business strategy and operations with the company President, Dr. Andrew Rosenberg, who is retiring from his position at the Union of Concerned Scientists at the end of August. Collectively, this experienced Executive Team will ensure the company continues its leading role in supporting successful, science-based, sustainable aquatic resources management in the Americas and around the world.

Jennie Harrington, previously Director of our Seafood Sourcing Division, has been promoted to Vice President and later this year will become Executive Vice President (EVP) and Head of the Executive Team. Jennie will be taking over from our current EVP Graeme Parkes, who will be taking on the role of Vice President: Project Management. Jennie will also retain senior oversight of our Chain of Custody certification operations within the new Certification Division.

Amanda Stern-Pirlot, previously Director of our Fisheries Certification Division, has been promoted to Vice President: Science. In this role, Amanda provides technical oversight of all our projects, ensuring that MRAG Americas maintains the strong science and evidence-based ethos for which we are well known. Amanda will play a prominent role in the Executive Team as Jennie’s deputy and also continue to oversee all Fisheries Certification projects.

Debra Welsh joins the Executive Team in her existing role as MRAG Americas’ Business Manager; responsible for managing the financial systems of the company, assessing financial performance and overseeing related administrative processes.

Divisional Structure

Certification Division: Our Fisheries and Chain of Custody certification activities are now united within a single Certification Division. This Division houses all our accredited certification programs including our new auditing activities under the Responsible Fisheries Management (RFM) and FISH Standard for Crew certification schemes, in addition to the existing Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certification programs. Oversight and management will be provided by Amanda Stern-Pirlot and Erin Wilson (Senior Manager) for Fisheries projects, and Jennie Harrington and Ben Hannah (Senior Manager) for Chain of Custody projects.  The Certification Division will be supported by a single enhanced Quality Management System (QMS) lead by Michealene Corlett to ensure our procedures keep pace with our expanding certification project portfolio.

Seafood Sustainability Initiatives and Auditing Division (SSIAD): Our former Seafood Sourcing Division has been replaced by the SSIAD with Oleg Martens as Division Director. This Division provides expert advice, services and support for a range of seafood sustainability programs and initiatives that are not covered by third party standards like MSC or RFM. This includes our long standing independent auditing work for the International Seafood Sustainability Foundation (ISSF) and verification of other sustainability and responsible sourcing claims.

Our Fisheries Technical and Fisheries Monitoring Divisions will continue to cover the same areas as before, with Monica Valle Esquivel as Principal Scientist in the former and Bryan Belay as Director of the latter.

Guidance and Tools for Traceability in Fishery Improvement Projects | Publications | WWF

MRAG Americas helped WWF put together this guide. WWF has produced this comprehensive guide to help Fishery Improvement Project (FIP) practitioners and stakeholders work successfully with the issue of seafood traceability to achieve improved FIP outcomes and encourage transparent and responsible practices across the fishing industry.

FIP Traceability Guidance Doc is now live and posted on WWF’s website, which can be found here: