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Seven Oceans GES© Case Study

Bangladesh: Seven Oceans

First fish processing company in Bangladesh


Seven Oceans Fish Processing is one of the leading fish processing companies in Bangladesh. Since 2011, the company has operated closely with its qualified farmers & suppliers sourced around the country. With the help of expert technicians and a comprehensive export-oriented policy & certifications, the company has gained market access to buyers around the world.

Currently, Seven Oceans is processing various kinds of Fish Fillets including Pangasius Fillet, Sea Bass Fillets, Tilapia Fillets, Basa Fillets with the goal of serving the local and international markets with high-quality service, innovation, committed care and high-end after-sales service.

Creating Impact

  • Building food security by increased production of safe food, improved productivity and higher yields. From sourcing, buying, processing, storage and marketing – the plants comply with high standards of quality that are ensured and monitored through the highly effective HACCP, ISO, EU and USFDA Quality System. Fully equipped in-house laboratories conduct organoleptic, bacteriological and chemical analyses to maintain the strict quality norms set by international bodies. Moreover, the company maintains strict health and safety protocol.
  • Seven Oceans employs nearly 90% of its total workforce from the surrounding local area and is developing their employees’ fish processing skills through regular training with international experts. This employment opportunity for these local employees has not only empowered them economically but also created indirect work opportunities for other local aquaculture farmers where the majority of them are women.
  • More than 70% of the factory work-force are women. Before working at Seven Oceans, the majority of these women were faced with working only in the home managing the household. By joining Seven Oceans these women have gained more decision-making power and freedom as a result of working in the factories and earning their own income which is promoting women’s economic empowerment in the local community.
  • Expansion plans will additionally create job opportunities in the fish meal and fish oil plant. At least 50% of employees in the new plant would be female.

Key Facts

Current Activities

  • Business Operations: Seven Oceans has a state-of-the-art fish processing facility with a wide range of fish fillets. The plant maintains high quality standards through the HACCP, ISO, EU and USFDA quality system. Majority (70%) of the processing workers are women.
  • New Business Ventures: Seven Oceans is in the process of expanding its business into Fish Meal and Fish Oil which will enable the company to increase revenues by selling the by-products of the fish processing company. The plant has a production capacity of 50 MT/day of fish meal-oil.
  • Diversified Export Market: Seven Oceans has shown its commercial capabilities by already exporting many countries around the world including EU, Eastern Europe, USA, Middle East and many other Countries.
  • Waste Management: Solid wastes generated by the processing plants are utilized to produce fish meal and fish oil which contain a high level of protein, amino acid and are highly digestible. The facility not only minimizes the waste production but also ensures proper treatment of wastewater through Effluent Treatment Plants.

Seven Oceans’ SEAF Gender Equality Score©

Bangladesh’s Aquaculture Gender Demographics

  • Bangladesh is a global leader in inland fish production. It is ranked 3rd in producing fish from inland water bodies and is also the 5th largest producer of aquaculture food fish according to FAO.
  • Women play a significant role in aquaculture production in Bangladesh. In terms of production, 43% of rural women are estimated to contribute their time to agriculture and/or aquaculture and fisheries-related activities in addition to their household responsibilities.
  • Bangladesh has seen an increase in the literacy rate for both women (71%) and men (76%), with the divide narrowing over the past 5 years.
  • According to the Global Gender Gap Report 2020, Bangladesh is the only one in the top 100 among its South Asian neighbors. The study showed Bangladesh had closed 72.6% of its overall gender gap and obtained 50th position out of 153 countries globally.

Women Economic Empowerment Highlights

Pay Equity

  • SEAF WEE Team is working with the Company on establishing employee surveys or benchmarking studies, with disaggregated data to further improve pay equity
  • Pay equity needs improvement, and the company, with the help of SEAF WEE Team, is working on this area

Benefits & Professional Development

  • Provides in-house doctors’ consultation and health check-up facilities which improve employee performance and increase productivity
  • Addressing gender equality in the workplace by offering paid maternity leave and other postnatal benefits following govt. regulations and guidelines
  • Seven Oceans enables women to reach their full potential by developing their technical skills through training from international experts

Workforce Participation

  • More than 70% of the factory workers are female. These women employees are mostly recruited from the local area. Seven Oceans prefers to recruit women in the production section as they have strong trimming skills
  • Seven Oceans has retention strategies that ensure high women’s participation at the fish processing plant

Workplace Environment

  • Hygiene and safety issues are highly prioritized by Seven Oceans in the processing plant. No employees are allowed to work without proper safety gear
  • Ensuring a safe workplace environment for women employees by putting a policy in place to protect against sexual harassment
  • Offering healthcare facilities and flexibility in their working arrangements which encourage the women employees to join and stay longer with the Company

Leadership & Governance

  • Women represent 17% of the Board of Seven Oceans
  • Ms. Lutfunnahar, Director, is promoting women’s full and effective participation and equal opportunities at leadership and decision-making. She also holds 4% ownership in the Company

Women Powered Value Chains

  • Seven Oceans is developing its policies to integrate women suppliers in the value chain
  • SEAF WEE team is working with the company to increase women participation in the procurement and marketing department