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MSC Fisheries and Chain of Custody Certification

MEC Team Profiles

Alba del Rio Poza

Managing Director
Alba del Rio Poza, Managing Director, MEC

Alba is MEC’s Managing Director. Originally trained as a chemist and food industries engineer, Alba has worked with food value chains, including fisheries, for more than 13 years. Ten years ago she worked for Macalister Elliott and Partners Ltd. (MEP) on the MSC Chain of Custody programme and managing numerous fisheries projects.

Prior to joining MEC, she was employed by the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) in Africa and Europe and prior to that with Fairtrade International as a certification standards officer. Alba has a wealth of experience managing projects and clients, speaks English, Spanish, French and Catalan and is also able to converse in Italian and Portuguese.

Chrissie Sieben

MSC Fisheries Scheme Manager
Chrissie Sieben, MSC Fisheries Scheme Manager, MEC

Chrissie is a qualified marine ecologist, having obtained an MSc. in Marine Environmental Protection at the University of Wales, Bangor. With experience in the NGO, inter-governmental and consultancy sectors, she joined MEP in 2010 where she conducted marine environmental research and surveying in the UK, the Mediterranean and the Indian Ocean. Chrissie now specialises in sustainable fisheries assessments for eco-labelling schemes, in particular the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) Principles and Criteria for Sustainable Fishing and WWF Common Methodology and leads our fisheries assessment team. Fluent in English, French and Dutch, Chrissie is a qualified MSC team leader and Principle 2 expert, and also manages MEC’s MSC fisheries portfolio.

Kat Collinson

MSC Fisheries Assessment Manager
Kat Collinson, MSC Fisheries Assessment Manager, MEC

With a wealth of experience in MSC assessments, Kat currently works as the Fisheries Assessment Manager for MEC. Kat has been involved in a large number of MSC Assessments to date as both a Team Leader and Principle 2 expert. Kat is also fully qualified as an MSC Chain of Custody lead assessor. Prior to her work at MEC, Kat undertook her MSc thesis in data analysis of an artisanal fishery in Yemen. This was followed by a range of tagging and research projects on sharks in the Bahamas combined with a wider variety of FIP related consultancy projects.

Dr. Hugh Jones

MSC Fisheries Assessment Manager
Dr. Hugh Jones, MSC Fisheries Assessment Manager, MEC

Hugh obtained his PhD in Australia investigating the bioaccumulation of mercury in estuarine food webs and the effects on human health, following a BSc. (Hons) in Marine Biology from Plymouth University.

He has a broad background in marine research including publications and reports on ecotoxicology, environmental risk assessments and fisheries research. Prior to joining MEC he was employed by the University of Tasmania as a fisheries scientist in the development of an empirical harvest strategy for the commercial abalone fisheries and fisheries assessments of estuarine bivalves. This included work on population metrics (recruitment, growth), harvest dynamics (catch rates, market selectivity), and the use of fine scale geo-spatial techniques as performance measures to assess stock sustainability.

He is a contributing author to the Status of Australian Fish stocks for Tasmanian abalone and shellfish fisheries. Hugh currently works as the Fisheries Assessment Manager for MEC.

Emily Cain

Finance Manager
Emily Cain, Finance Manager, MEC

Emily joined MEC in 2013 and is responsible for all aspects of the MEC company accounts. Prior to this Emily worked in the marine industry as a naval architect and chartered engineer.

Cora Seip

MSC Fisheries Assessment Manager
Cora Seip, MSC Fisheries Assessment Manager, MEC

Cora obtained an MSc. in Biology at the University of Leiden (NL) where she, among other things, studied the effects of anthropogenic noise underwater, especially in relation to sea mammals.

She has worked for and with the fishing industry. As a policy officer at the Dutch Fish Product Board, she focused on marine spatial planning in general, and specifically on Natura 2000 implementation.
In 2012 she became an independent consultant, and specialised in environmental impact assessments, nature conservation licencing and ecolabels. She has been involved in several Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) assessments, both as clients’ representative and as a Principle 3 expert.

Cora speaks Dutch, English, and German.

Tom Bourner

MSC / ASC Chain of Custody Scheme Manager
Tom Bourner, MSC / ASC Chain of Custody Scheme Manager, MEC

Tom joined MEC in 2014 having studied Marine Biology at the University of Southampton. He has taken over the day to day management of the MSC Chain of Custody scheme and is responsible for conducting a large proportion of the required audits. His previous experience in financial auditing and food retail is invaluable in understanding how our clients businesses operate.

Kate Dunne

MSC / ASC Chain of Custody Scheme Administrator
Kate Dunne, MSC / ASC Chain of Custody Scheme Administrator, MEC

Kate joined MEC in June 2014 and works on the administration of MSC/ASC Chain of Custody assessments. She previously has many years of experience in the IT industry encompassing a variety of roles and companies. This included project, program and project office management.

Ruth Gallo

MSC / ASC Chain of Custody Officer
Ruth Gallo, MSC / ASC Chain of Custody Officer, MEC

Ruth has a degree in Marine Biology from the National University of Mar del Plata (Argentina) where she worked as a Quality Control inspector for fishery companies. She then completed studies in Import-Export at the First National Bank of Boston in Buenos Aires, in order to achieve a better understanding of the fisheries trading business and associated regulations on labelling and packaging. After working in customs and other business related roles in Europe, she completed an MSc in Environment and Resource Management at the University of Essex in the UK. Ruth completed her dissertation at the “Earthwatch Institute” (Oxford) on the assessment of environmental impact of rivers in Jakarta and Kuala Lumpur using data analysis.

Fluent in English, Spanish and Italian as well as being able to converse in Portuguese, Ruth works in our Chain of Custody team and is involved in all aspects of the certification process.

Henry Ernst

MSC Fisheries Officer
Henry Ernst, MSC Fisheries Officer, MEC

Henry obtained a MSci in marine biology from the University of Southampton. He has a broad background in marine research including inshore fisheries, functional marine ecology and aquaculture research. Prior to joining MEC he was engaged in benthic invertebrate identification and biomass work with the National Oceanographic Centre, Southampton, United Kingdom and data compilation for Antarctic fauna with the British Antarctic Survey. Fluent in English, French and German Henry joined the MEC team in 2017 as a fisheries officer and oversees the production and completion of MSC fisheries reports for publication.

Claire Parfett

Accreditation Manager
Claire Parfett, Accreditation Manager, MEC

Claire has worked in the MSC certification business since 2010, and is responsible for overseeing MEC’s certification and accreditation systems. Initially joining the company to manage the day to day administration of the MSC Chain of Custody programme, she now ensures the on-going compliance of our business in line with the accreditation requirements.