Championing safe aquaculture produce
Category : Updates
Betty More and her husband Bill have been immersed in seafood since they were married in 1961 and together they have formed a formidable force in the aquaculture sector. Aquaculture without Frontiers wishes to acknowledge Betty’s amazingly resilient contribution to aquaculture and with great pleasure gives Betty More the Woman of the Month award for July 2016.
One of the problems in the early days facing the aquaculture industry was a lack of transparency. The work that Betty did (in supporting Bill and others) has enabled industry engagement in certification with all the bells and whistles of an independent standard. On the journey Betty has been a great support to many hundreds of people in developing countries who struggled with the paperwork and the systems. Well versed at the highest level in food safety Betty has ensured many organisations have been able to get over the line.
The Mores have been instrumental in the development and implementation of the Hazardous Analysis Critical Control Points (HACCP) certification system used for Best Aquaculture Practice. HACCP is a preventative food safety management system in which every step in the manufacture, storage and distribution of a food product is analyzed for microbiological, physical and chemical hazards.
Gaining Certification is complex. There is no ‘one size fits all’ approach, so at every turn problems exist to catch ‘young players’, resulting in poor access to markets and problems in growing a business. Betty has been the person who applied knowledge and common sense to that process and was the voice of encouragement to so many.
Betty continued her extensive training and auditing of social and food management systems and mentored countless people, especially in developing countries, throughout her career.
In the years starting with 2004 – 2011, we gave many courses – Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam, Nicaragua, Mexico, Ireland, USA, and had very diverse groups in every class covering many other countries.
The Aquaculture Certification Council (ACC) was set up to help aquaculture facilities to improve in their farming and processing methods. The Mores saw this as an opportunity to help the facilities to be stronger and better informed so they knew how to address problems. In doing so, it made food safer, the environment around them more sustainable and addressed social issues head on.
It was our policy to always have an open door to anyone from around the world that needed help. If we could not give it to them, we tried to connect them to someone who could. To this day, we still have people write to us for help and we try to accommodate them when we can. During the 14 years I worked with the program, I was always referred to as Miss Betty and I worked with nearly every facility that came into the program from 2001 to 2010.
In 2011, the ACC was absorbed by the Global Aquaculture Alliance (GAA) and along with the organisation came Betty and Bill, still offering assistance wherever it was needed.
In addition to Betty’s outstanding work in the aquaculture sector, she has worked in a number of roles in her earlier life including real-estate, the Department of Defense and running small tropical fish business where she raised Siamese fighting fish and several other species and sold them to pet shops! Amongst other accomplishments, she compiled and wrote the book “Soldier Boy” from 110 letters from the Civil War 1861-65.