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Commercial Fisheries Manager

sustainable talent | Den Haag | HBO | Fulltime | Sluit 2017-10-09

Vanwege verdere groei zoekt MSC een medior commercieel talent, gedreven door duurzaamheid. Een bouwer van sustainable fish supply chains, tussen visserij bedrijven, retail en commerciële partners


MSC Background

The Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) is a global not for profit organisation, established in 1997 to address the problem of unsustainable fishing and to ensure healthy oceans for the future.

Through our world-leading certification and eco-labelling program, we are helping to create a more sustainable seafood market and importantly better managed oceans. We work with a diverse range of stakeholders – including consumers, retailers, food processors, the fishing industry and governments. Having experienced remarkable growth over the last fifteen years, our blue ecolabel is now one of the most well recognised and successful ecolabels in use over five continents. We now employ more than 150 staff across 15 offices around the world.

The MSC is quite well established in the Benelux region. The Netherlands is one of the most advanced markets in the global MSC program, in terms of market share, consumer recognition and MSC labelled products. The Commercial and Fisheries Manager (CFM) has the exciting role of implementing the MSC’s commercial and fisheries outreach activities in the Dutch seafood market and catch sector to promote and enhance the MSC’s partner engagement.

About the role

The CFM will report to, and assist, the Senior Commercial and Fisheries Manager in delivering the MSC’s strategic targets, overarching aims and objectives of various projects (outlined below). The CFM will work in close collaboration with the other members of the Benelux team and the European team to deliver a consistent approach to the harvest and market sectors in the Benelux region.

With committed retailers working towards 100% certification on private label products, a small but growing presence in foodservice and fishmongers, MSC BNLX is expected to enter years of continued growth in the volume of product sourced and sold, and in the number of certified supply chain companies.

With this growing demand and continuously improving fisheries management in our waters we expect the volume of fish from certified fisheries to increase as well, while simultaneously incentivising continued improvements in sustainability.

The CFM supports the full range of MSC partners in her/his day to day work, from suppliers to supermarkets, from traders to restaurants, from fishmongers to large foodservice operators, and from processors to the catch sector. This makes the position challenging but at the same time very interesting. The client portfolio will be shared with the Senior Commercial Manager.

The CFM is expected to play a role in these developments with account management and by supporting the Senior Commercial & Fisheries Manager, collaborating closely with the Benelux and European teams. The CFM will be account holder for commercial as well as fisheries clients, servicing them on day to day work, as well as with strategic output.

Outreach involves holding presentations, building and maintaining relationships, and promoting and explaining the MSC’s concept and certification program to potential clients. The CFM ensures that all the MSC outreach services are targeted to meet client needs, are produced to a high standard, and represent the MSC accurately and persuasively.

Ultimately, the post strives to improve ocean health by increasing the purchasing opportunities of MSC products for consumers, by achieving wider availability of certified product. The CFM may also be involved in wider MSC projects such as standard development or international working groups.

B. RESPONSIBILITIES(Key Results and Outcomes)

The Commercial and Fisheries Manager’s work has a number of focus areas. He/she will

  1. Be responsible for outreach to selected commercial partners in the Netherlands. This involves market and data analysis, supply chain mapping, and account management for retailers, foodservice operators, processors, distributors, and group managers;
  2. be responsible for account management of selected fisheries clients and will cooperate with the BNLX and global teams on developments in fisheries outreach, in line with the MSC’s Integrated Strategic Plan 2017-2020; and
  3. support the MSC Benelux communications staff in their marketing and communications activities in the Netherlands.

The CFM’s specific responsibilities are as follows:

  • Undertaking market analysis and mapping of the Dutch seafood supply chain. This involves data analysis of consumer demand, market shares, analyzing market statistics research, trade data etc. This also involves mapping different processing, distribution and sales channels and volumes. In essence, the CFM provides full insight into the Dutch market pressure points to achieve a transition towards a sustainable fish consumption market and supply chain.
  • Leading part of the outreach to the commercial sector to increase its participation in the program in line with the MSC's strategic targets. He/she is responsible for account management for selected clients (supermarkets, fishmongers, brands, foodservice operators such as restaurant chains and caterers, group management). This means servicing clients pro-actively and reactively on their needs/requests/queries, building and retaining relationships, training, and explaining. He/she promotes and explains the sustainability solution provided by the MSC program and the MSC certification program, notably its Chain of Custody and ecolabelling programs. He/she co-develops a commercial strategy with the Program Director Benelux and the Senior CFM.

  • Cooperating with and supporting the Senior CFM in Fisheries outreach in line with the strategic direction of the MSC 2017-2020 Integrated Strategic Plan, as well as leading outreach to selected clients. This pertains to the Netherlands catch sector, active both in the North Sea and globally.
  • Supporting the Program Director, Benelux in account management with NGOs, policymakers, funding agencies, and other non-commercial stakeholders.
  • Support communications on fishery content for consumers, like social media, and also the MSC newsletter. As part of going to scale the MSC BLX is looking to increase its effectiveness in communications, not only to consumers but also to stakeholders.
  • Any other duties, as requested by the Program Director Benelux or the Regional Director Europe.
  • This post holds no people management responsibilities, other than supervising occasional interns working on projects related to the Commercial Manager’s role.



  • Excellent verbal communication skills, especially the ability to convey complex ideas clearly and simply
  • Adaptable to formal and informal settings
  • Ability to build and manage effective relationships with partner organisations, to genuinely connect to the MSC’s partner interests while also able to defend MSC’s policies
  • Completed University or Higher Professional Education
  • Fluent spoken and written Dutch and English

  • Excellent interpersonal and influencing skills; proven ability to build and maintain effective professional relationships, both internal and external
  • (Data) analytical skills

  • Ability to meet tight deadlines and manage multiple projects
  • Ability to work on own initiative and within given budgets
  • Good computer literacy, including proficiency in MS Office products (Word, Outlook, PowerPoint, Excel, SharePoint).


  • Demonstrable experience of successfully engaging commercial partners, and working in commercial market environments
  • Demonstrable experience in a similar or transferable role at a similar level
  • Demonstrated knowledge of, and motivation for, resource sustainability issues, preferably as they relate to wild capture fisheries
  • Experience of preparing accessible presentations, reports and briefings for internal and external audiences
  • Experience of planning and delivering commercial events, to achieve organisational goals
  • Proven ability to communicate and engage with a diverse range of people at all levels
  • Previous account management experience
  • Experience with development and/or implementation of marketing communication strategies
  • Preferably experienced in working in the seafood market, or another food commodity.


  • Commitment to, and drive for, the MSC's mission
  • Team player with a positive can-do mentality
  • Clear and sensitive communicator with a confident and persuasive manner
  • Creative thinker and problem solver with hands on mentality
  • Well organised, methodical and analytical
  • Flexible worker, able to manage a complex and diverse workload successfully
  • Good understanding of sustainable development and related commercial and communications issues
  • Versatility to combine productive team membership with self-management and self-support when working alone
  • An open and positive personality with the clear capacity to engage with people at all levels
  • Willingness to travel and work from The Hague office.

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