Displaying items by tag: fishing
WWF project brings alternative livelihoods to fishers in the Adriatic
For the past three years, WWF Adria, a regional WWF office for the Balkans with headquarters in Zagreb, Croatia, has been working in Telašćica Nature Park / Marine Protected Area (MPA), in the center of the Croatian coast. The MPA is becoming known as the place where, for the first time in Croatia, fishers have been involved in the design of the management plan for the protected area. The key objective is to create a model for sustainable fisheries in the Adriatic.
A network has been created between the fishers, government (Directorate of Fisheries), the park management, and WWF Adria to co-manage the fisheries. The network is part of the FishMPABlue2 project which is building good working relationships between MPA managers and fishers in 11 pilot sites in six Mediterranean countries. In Croatia, the project’s “co-management model” strives to develop effective governance measures with a positive impact on the environment and on the socio-economic levels of local fishing communities. Within the project, the fishers decided to create a no-take zone in the MPA themselves and substituted their nets with more selective ones to reduce fishing pressure and catch-per-unit-effort.
This article was featured in EUROFISH Magazine 5/2019.
An estimated 33% of the European fishing fleet catches are fished in British waters. The UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson insists on Britain “maintaining control of these UK fishing waters” after it leaves the EU, he said in his first meeting with European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, who took office in December. The two are discussing the negotiations after Brexit, on January 31, with Johnson wanting a trade deal with the EU completed by the end of 2020 without Britain aligning with EU rules. He said the UK wanted “a broad free-trade agreement covering goods and services and co-operation in other areas”. With regards to fishing rights the two sides have committed to negotiating a new framework in place by 1 July although EU spokespersons believe that talks will go deep into the year due to its complexities.
Octopus is an important source of income for Senegalese fishermen and women due to its high value on international markets like Europe and Japan. Last year 15,000 clay pots were submerged in Senegalese local waters to form artificial reefs protecting and sheltering octopuses. The artificial breeding beds provided by the clay pots have increased the production of octopus considerably. This generates significant revenues at community level which benefit the local woman making the clay pots, the artisanal fishermen and fisherwomen who have an abundant and high value octopus stock to fish from, and the local fish merchants selling the octopus. The octopus pots not only preserve and restore the ecosystem and increase the octopus biomass but they also support the local artisanal fisheries by maintaining an economically viable activity.
A social agenda for the artisanal fishing sector was presented by the Undersecretariat of Fisheries and Aquaculture (SUBPESCA), as part of a package of measures put together by the government to create a more equitable society in Chile. The initiative consists of nine actions that will directly benefit the artisanal sector along Chile's 6,435 km coastline with an estimated investment of USD600 million (ca. EUR543 million). All the measures will be initiated by the end of the year. The actions have been developed with the assistance of the National Institute for Sustainable Development of Artisanal Fisheries and the Organisation of Small-scale Aquaculture (Indespa), both of which will have a key role in the implementation of some of the initiatives. The initiatives include providing support for aging fishermen, creating a registry of artisanal fisheries though which fishermen can draw on support, solar powered desalination plants that will allow the opening of restaurants and other tourist businesses, financing for algae growing and for small fish farms, value-adding initiatives, the promotion of seafood consumption, and the creation of a school for fishermen with free training programmes for those working in the artisanal fishing sector.
Serious shortcomings exist in the mechanisms that Ecuador has put in place to ensure compliance with its international fishing obligations according the European Commission. The legal framework in place in the country is outdated and not in line with international and regional rules for the conservation and management of fishing resources, and law enforcement is hampered by this outdated legal framework. In addition, inefficient administrative procedures and a lenient attitude towards infringements means the sanctions regime is neither depriving the offenders from the benefits gained from IUU fishing, nor deterring it. Deficiencies in terms of control, notably over the activity of the tuna fishing and processing industries, undermine the reliability of the traceability system upon which the certification of the legality of the catches is based.
Ahead of the Council meeting on Fisheries taking place in mid-December, the Commission has adopted its proposal for fishing opportunities, the Total Allowable Catches (TACs), in 2020 for 72 stocks in the Atlantic and the North Sea. Quotas for 32 stocks will increase or remain the same, while 40 stocks will have their quota reduced. The quotas are set for most commercial fish stocks at levels that maintain or restore them to health, while allowing the industry to take the highest amount of fish. The proposal follows advice from the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES). Sustainable fishing has made substantial progress in the EU: in 2019, 59 stocks are being fished at Maximum Sustainable Yield levels, up from 53 in 2018 and compared to only 5 in 2009, meaning that the fishing pressure on the stocks is limited to a level that will allow a healthy future for the fish stocks' biomass, while taking into account socio-economic factors. As the size of some key fish stocks is increasing – for instance, haddock in the Celtic Sea and sole in the Bristol Channel – so has the European fishing sector’s profitability which will reach an estimated €1.3 billion in 2019.
The use of slave labor to catch fish is an epidemic whose severity needs no elucidation. New technology, however, may hold the key to fighting forced labour in the fishing industry. An estimated 21 million people are trapped in enslaved labor around the world. Many of these slaves are forced to work on fishing vessels, with illegal fishing practices generating over $23 billion each year. The tendency is for men who are seeking work to board ships willingly, but then once they are isolated at sea, their wages are withheld, and they are subjected to violent, bleak working conditions for years.
Estonia’s economy has grown 4.5% in the first quarter of 2019 with a new GDP totaling €6.7 billion. The country’s economic growth has been broad based with expansion of the fishing sector among the contributors to the improving economy. The exports of goods, which grew by 9.6% in the first quarter, the fastest pace recoded in the past two years, is one of the biggest contributors to the country’s healthy economy.
Fish processing continues to be a notable industry in Estonia. In 2017 Estonia processed 51876 tones of fish, mainly frozen saltwater fish but also fish fillets in batter, and canned sardines, sardinella, brisling and sprats. Exports totaled €146 million with the largest markets in Ukraine, Belarus, Denmark and Finland. In 2017 approximately 5% of Estonia’s aquaculture production was exported. The species responsible for this exportation were mainly European eel, rainbow trout and European crayfish.
Convincing benefits for suppliers and buyers
A lot of primary food producers try to sell part of their products directly to consumers and thereby circumvent other forms of trade. What has long been common practice for agricultural products is now becoming increasingly popular for fish and seafood, too. This marketing principle has advantages for both parties: the producers get better prices and the customers get optimal freshness.
When at around 4 p.m. the "petits bateaux" return to the port of Le Guilvinec on the French Atlantic coast and the fishermen unload their freshly caught fish or langoustines they are already eagerly awaited at the quayside by locals, restaurant operators and tourists. Fish that is not snapped up immediately can be seen shortly afterwards in one of the harbour fish shops, for example "La Marée du Jour", where crowds of customers are also already waiting. Three and a half hours further north-east by car in Cancale a good half dozen colourful stalls have been set up next to the town’s beach. That is where local oyster farmers offer their specialities. It would be hard to get "creuses de Cancale" fresher, or for that matter at a lower price, than here. Fresh fish sales straight from the fishing boat are also popular along the German Baltic coast. Anyone who wants to buy freshly caught cod or herring directly from the fisherman in the harbour of Wismar has to be an early riser: the town’s remaining fishermen usually land their day’s catch around breakfast time. And a lot of German trout producers, too, sell their fish directly to their customers. This sales channel is in the meantime practically indispensable from an economic point of view. Almost all producers offer their products in farm shops or at weekly markets, both fresh and processed – mainly hot smoked. Some trout farmers even have their own snack stands or fish restaurants. Direct sales are more lucrative than supplying to wholesalers and retailers. And they enable even smaller enterprises with relatively low production volumes to stay in business.
Remaining agile in a dynamic marketplace
The Internet offers fishermen and retail shops ways to sell their catches that were unheard of a decade ago. Young (and older) consumers have quickly understood the benefits of online shopping, and vendors must keep pace with the latest, continually changing developments.
Sellers enjoy superior visibility, allowing smaller concerns to compete with larger businesses, with 24/7 exposure to a wider national, even global, audience. They also benefit from enhanced business management. By tracking data about customer purchases, sellers learn their customers’ preferences and are able to target those groups with specific offers. An Internet presence allows businesses to remain agile in a dynamic marketplace.
Two businesses, while maintaining their physical stores in Vigo, Spain, have embraced the new technology. La Pescadería de mi Barrio (My Neighbourhood Fishmonger) is a business-to-business (B2B) concern. Delmaralplato is both B2B and business to customer, selling to restaurants and consumers.