Consumers are demanding to know where the seafood they buy comes from to ensure catches are legal, sustainable and free from labor abuse.The technology to deliver that information, once out of reach for small-scale fishers, is becoming more accessible in places like the Philippines.Its adoption is not only increasing seafood traceability but also improving the safety of fishers while they’re out on the water.Fishers and their families, among the most vulnerable in the seafood supply chain, say they welcome the security and peace of mind the technology brings. GENERAL SANTOS, Philippines — The first time Maylene Bibat saw the green dot on her tablet marking the location of her husband’s boat, she was thrilled. “I instantly felt less worried,” said the mother of three. “It was like knowing that he was safe.” For years, Maylene had to wait anxiously in silence in her small village in the southern Philippines while her husband, Harry, was at sea catching the tuna the family depends on. Hundreds of miles offshore, there was no way for him to communicate with her, often for days at a stretch. Until now. With fish stocks depleted due to overfishing and after a number of scandals around the use of forced labor on fishing vessels, consumers and companies are increasingly demanding to know the origin of the fish they buy. For instance, in 2017 some of the biggest industry players in the sector launched the Global Tuna Alliance to deter illegally caught tuna from getting to market and to promote “improvements in the environmental sustainability and human rights in tuna fisheries.” Not only big fishing vessels, but also smaller boats, are now installing systems to track where they catch fish and register the data for others in the supply chain to see. These systems are changing the lives of small-scale fishermen like Harry Bibat in an unexpected way: by enabling them to stay in touch with their families. “Now the life of a fisherman is more challenging than it used to be when I was helping my father [as a kid],” said Harry, who owns a handline boat that only fits two people. Last year, Harry made room in his boat for a small transponder that registers the position of the craft and sends it through radio frequencies to the cloud. He placed it on top of one of his two masts. Data from the transponder is available to seafood companies, as well as on Maylene’s tablet through an application that displays the location and speed of his boat . “It is a big help for my family to be able to monitor my location while I’m fishing,” Harry said. The emotional relief is today more needed than ever. Harry’s trips have become increasingly risky as he has to spend longer at sea because the fish around the city of General Santos, the so-called tuna capital of the Philippines just a few miles west of Harry’s village, have vanished.