The Fairtrade Foundation is about to certify seafood for the first time, launching a set of standards for warm-water prawns.

The organisation is in the final throes of agreeing standards with the industry, and hopes to publish them within weeks. Once the standards have been agreed, retailers and suppliers will be able to source prawns that carry the Fairtrade mark.

Although much of the prawn industry was dominated by large farms, there were a number of small farmers who stood to benefit from Fairtrade standards, the Foundation said. “As wild-caught fish comes under increasing pressure, farmed fish is increasing in importance. It’s important these smaller farmers have a fair shot at accessing that potential,” said commercial director Ashish Deo.

Retailers were supportive of the standards because it would give them a wider variety of sources to choose from, he ­added.