“Status of the Stocks Tool” introduced by The International Seafood Sustainability Foundation (ISSF)

ISSF has developed a new data-visualization tool based on its long-running and widely followed Status of the Stocks report. The “Status of the Stocks Tool” is located on the ISSF website and accessible through the Status of the Stocks overview page; users can easily toggle through tuna stock health indicators and filter by location, species and other key stock health and catch factors. Tuna is the specie in three of the case studies in the FarFish project and, thus, the information provided the ISSF’s tool provides valuable information.

FarFish newsletter is out!

In this issue we have stories about the FarFish kick-off meeting, FarFish Workshop meeting and more interesting stories/articles.

Want to know more? Read the newsletter!

FarFish presented at the Conference on Technical Innovation within the Seafood and Food Sector

The Conference on Technical Innovation within the Seafood and Food Sector took place on November 21st, hosted by ANFACO-CECOPESCA in Vigo, Spain. The conference serves as a platform to present various technological innovation in the seafood sector and different projects developed by the fishing and canning sector. On the program was a presentation on the Farfish project, given by D. Gonzalo Ojea from ANFACO-CECOPESCA. The presentation on Farfish was the final presentation of the conference and gave a clear introduction to the FarFish project, the main concept and goals.

Farfish WP/CS Leaders Workshop Meeting

The Farfish WP/CS Leaders Workshop Meeting started this week at the University of the Algarve in Faro, Portugal. During the first day of meeting, the 21. of November, the focus was on preparation for methodology and harmonisation for upcoming work in work packages 3 – 5 and discussions and coordination on methodology & harmonisation to be applied in case studies.

The second day of the meeting was used for discussions on the approval of the agenda, status and next steps of each work package and other businesses.

Researcher position vacant in fisheries management – FarFish partner

The Norwegian College of Fishery Science (NCFS), UiT the Arctic University of Norway, has a Researcher position vacant in fisheries management. The position is attached to the research group BRIDGE.

The Norwegian College of Fishery Science (NCFS) undertakes research and research-based teaching of high national and international quality in an interdisciplinary environment. Research activity is provisionally organized into the groups of: Living Marine Resources, Sea Food Science, Fish Health, Marine Drug Discovery, Resource Management, Marine Management and Resource Economics.

BRIDGE (Research group of fisheries management, harvest technology and biology) carries out research within the following main areas: fisheries management, fisheries biology, marine ecology and harvest technology. The goal of BRIDGE is to provide education and research of high quality in order to advance the level of knowledge in areas that are important for fisheries management. BRIDGE comprises long experience with carrying out research and education tasks in a highly interdisciplinary field. The research group engages in extensive internal cooperation with other research groups at the faculty and at the UiT as well as in international cooperation (notably through participation in several EU research projects).

More information

Did you know? A New Era of Blue Enlightenment!

A very important workshop and a project showcase will take place at the event “A New Era of Blue Enlightenment” taking place in Lisbon, Portugal 12 – 14 July 2017. The FarFish project main topics are in line with this important event.

Commissioner Carlos Moedas will host a High-Level Ministerial and Scientific event on 12-14 July 2017 in Lisbon, Portugal, joined by high-level government representatives from Brazil and South Africa, as well as from the European Union.

This event will celebrate the launch of the South Atlantic Flagship Initiative between the European Union, Brazil and South Africa, aiming to better understand and protect marine ecosystems and the link between oceans and climate,

A Statement on Atlantic Ocean Research and Innovation Cooperation between the European Union, Brazil and South Africa is planned to be signed during the event.

A New Era of Blue Enlightenment – Lisbon, Portugal 12 – 14 July 2017. Photo: Anna Kristín Daníelsdóttir


A New Era of Blue Enlightenment – Lisbon, Portugal 12 – 14 July 2017. Photo: Anna Kristín Daníelsdóttir

Improving knowledge and management of EU fisheries outside Europe, while contributing to sustainability and long-term profitability

This June marks the beginning of FarFish, a new EU Horizon 2020 project aiming to improve sustainability and profitability of the European fishing fleet operating outside European waters. FarFish brings together 21 organisations and agencies across Europe, Africa and South America in addition to a number of international organizations.

“About 20% of the catch of the European fishing fleet is obtained from non-European sea areas. This access is granted in international marine areas and within the jurisdiction of coastal states where agreements have been made on access of the fleet. These EU “Sustainable Fisheries Partnership Agreements” grant European operators access to fisheries and include financing for infrastructure development in the fisheries sector. These agreements have been controversial, especially on the west coast of Africa. In response to this criticism, the Horizon 2020 research program has decided to support research and development efforts to promote improvements in this area; that is the story of FarFish’s mission,” says FarFish Project Coordinator Jónas Rúnar Viðarsson of Matís.

The FarFish project is designed around six case study areas in which the European operators are actively engaged in fishing activities, including Cape Verde, Mauritania, Senegal and Seychelles, as well as the international seas in the southeast and southwest Atlantic. In this context of geographic, economic and cultural diversity, the project will gain insights into the sustainability commercially important species such as tuna, hake, mackerel, sardines, octopus, shrimp, and other relevant fisheries. The project will contribute to the exploitation at or below corresponding Maximum Sustainable Yields (MSY) for these fisheries. The research will advance biological knowledge through collection of data on ecological, economic and socially important aspects of these fisheries. The project will work with stakeholders to create accessible and adaptable fisheries management tools within the case study areas. Additionally, efforts will be made to increase the responsibility of the European fleet for area use and disclosure of information. Overlaying the collection of important data and the development of improved management tools, the FarFish project has a strong focus on fisheries management knowledge creation and capacity building among stakeholders in the coastal states and the European fishing fleet.

FarFish coordinator Jónas Rúnar Viðarsson is enthusiastic as the project partners meet for the first time. “It is clear that this is an extremely important issue; that fisheries are managed in a sustainable way no matter where the fish are harvested. It is important to keep in mind that this project is addressing issues within a complex system.  Many of these fisheries have been plagued by unregulated fishing, which can have a detrimental effect on the status of important stocks and livelihoods of people in coastal countries both outside and within Europe.”

FarFish receives funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement no. 727891.

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Successful FarFish kick-off meeting

Kick-off meeting in the FarFish EU project took place in Vigo, Spain June 13th-15th. Stakeholders from all over attended the meeting, creating a springboard for a successful project. The coordinator, Jónas R. Viðarsson of Matís, was satisfied with this initial meeting and sees the next four years as a great opportunity for all stakeholders.


Kick-off meeting for a new EU project

BFE and its partners from Tromsø celebrated on Thursday the start of a new European Union (EU) funded project about marine resource management. The Norwegian College of Fishery Science has been involved until now in 12 EU projects and FarFish is the last one added to the family. The objective of this project is to improve the knowledge about fisheries management outside Europe and among the partners of FarFish there are Brazil, Cap Verde, Mauritania, Morocco, Senegal and Seychelles.


FarFish 2017 – 2021

The FarFish project will provide new knowledge that can contribute to implementation of future-oriented management criteria for non-EU waters fisheries where the Union has established cooperation with third countries. With the help of six big case studies situated in the South Atlantic Ocean and the Indian Ocean, the project will gain insight in the sustainability of, among others, tuna, coastal and deep-water shrimp, octopus and sardines fisheries. Twenty-one partners from both inside and outside Europe will work together to improve methods for data collection and for usage of research results based on these data. The development of the FarFish database and improved management routines will constitute together a good basis for the management plans that have to be developed within the project.

Wide interdisciplinary competence of the Norwegian partners

The Norwegian College of Fishery Science from the Faculty of Biosciences, Fisheries and Economics (BFE) leads one of the work packages in the project and, together with the Norwegian Marine Research Institute and Nofima, will receive more than 10 million nok during the 4 years period of the project. The work package led by the College will develop and adapt management plans for the fisheries included in the case studies.

We are very glad that this application was funded and we are looking forward to start the work, says Michaela Aschan, pro-dean with research at BFE and work package leader in FarFish.

UiT is the second biggest partner in the project and the contribution of the  Norwegian College of Fishery Science comes from an interdisciplinary group of colleagues with wide competence. Research areas such as marine ecology and physiology, population biology, bio-economic modelling, effects of climate change on fisheries, fisheries management, natural resource management, value chain analysis, social sciences, socioeconomics, statistics and theoretical modelling are represented in this group. In addition to leading an individual work package, the College is involved in all the other seven work packages of the FarFish project.

– It is new that the EU focuses so explicitly on improving knowledge on and management of fisheries outside its own territory, says Aschan. It is also appealing that the Union wishes to show responsibility and improve sustainability in all the fisheries that it uses.  For us as researchers it is exciting and instructive to work with new colleagues from South America, Africa and Asia. This also gives the Fisheries College the possibility to contribute with its developing countries competence in a highly interdisciplinary and problem solving oriented project, adds Aschan.

The project will be officially opened with a meeting of participants from all the partner countries in Vigo, Spain, 13-15.06.2017.