Processors use the Verifish platform to demonstrate sustainable sourcing of fishery products.
Fishery Improvement Projects provide a platform for fishermen, seafood buyers and suppliers to develop a strategy to improve a specific fishery over a given time period.
Fishery Improvement Projects
The target species in the Irish crab fishery is Cancer pagurus. C. pagurus is a “long lived” (i.e.>20 years) species. It matures at a size of approximately 100-130mm carapace width and at a probable age of 5-7 years. Juvenile crab are abundant in shallow coastal waters and tend to migrate to deeper waters as they grow. Recently size frequency data of crab from the fishery shows a trend in increasing size with distance offshore.
All targeted fishing for crab is undertaken with pots or creels set in ‘strings’ of 25-100. The pots are composed of a metal frame supporting a wide mesh netting. Entrances are designed mainly as so called “soft-eyes” which consists of a flap of netting which the crab can push upwards as it enters the pot and which then closes. Some pots may have hard eye tope entrances and may have a double chamber. However such variations are exceptions in the targeted crab fishery and are more likely to be used locally in the lobster fishery. Gear is baited with a variety of fish species and is soaked for 24-72hrs although exceptionally, during for example poor weather, they may be soaked for longer periods of time.
This Fishery Improvement Project is focused on Irish fisheries for whitefish species – hake, megrim, anglerfish, haddock and whiting – which are important for the Irish fishing industry. Collectively the landings of these species are valued at around €43.3 million caught principally in four trawl and seine fisheries and a targeted gillnet fishery for hake. Total landings for all species have been relatively stable over the period 2011-2015.
This Fishery Improvement Project is focused on the Irish Fishery for Albacore Tuna. This is an important species for the pelagic fleet and they are caught of the South and West Coasts of Ireland. Ireland has a quota of 2,600 tonnes, the majority of which is caught with pelagic pair trawls and a smaller amount caught on lines.
Nephrops norvegicus or Dublin Bay prawns are found throughout the Atlantic waters of the EU, from the Azores to the North Sea. They live on muddy sea beds in burrows at depths that range from a few metres down to 500 m or more. Nephrops can live up to 12 years in the case of males, 30 in the case of females, and can reach more than 25 cm in length (measured by the carapace), though most adults are typically between 10 and 20 cm long. They reach sexual maturity at between two and three years of age.
The Celtic Sea Herring Management Advisory Committee (CSHMAC) is implementing a Fishery Improvement Project for Celtic Sea Herring. CSHMAC is working with The Marine Institute (Ireland’s fisheries scientific body) on a rebuilding plan. The plan is being developed over the summer of 2018 and will be presented to the Pelagic Advisory Council in October.
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Cork fisherman Frank Fleming of Marine Applications has developed Supply Chain Software Technology to help the fishing industry meet quality and sustainability standards.
RESEARCH & DEVELOPMENT
European Space Agency (ESA) and Marine Integrated Applications (MarIA): Our company is in a project, with ESA, enabling fishing vessels and processors to use satellite technology to support sustainability and quality initiatives. ESA Project