The Common Fisheries Policy of the EU is currently implementing a landing obligation, which will require fishermen to land all catches that are subjected to catch limits (with some minor exemptions). This discard ban is to be fully implemented by 2019 and fishermen are currently struggling to see how they can meet with these requirements. The DiscardLess project is aimed at assisting the fishing industry to successfully adapt to the landing obligation. Work package 5 in the DiscardLess project focuses on providing stakeholders, such as fishermen and fishing vessel owners, with alternatives for on-board handling of the previously discarded catches.
This report provides an overview of the work that has been done in task 5.4 in the DiscardLess project. The aim of that work has been to take suggested solutions from previous tasks in the work package on on-board handling of unwanted, unavoidable catches for four different fleet segments and present those solutions in 3D drawings, accompanied with a simple cost-benefit tool that allows stakeholders to estimate the economic feasibility of investing in the suggested solutions.
The fleet segments selected represent a descriptive cross-section of European fisheries in terms of fleet composition and main challenges i.e. 11-meter coastal vessel, 23-meter Danish seiner/trawler, 39-meter bottom trawler and 50-meter bottom trawler.
The 3D drawings and the cost-benefit tool have been made available at the DiscardLess webpage http://www.discardless.eu/tools which enables stakeholders, such as fishermen and fishing vessel owners, to see in a visual manner how the suggested solutions can be fitted on the vessels and whether or not investing in them is likely to give economic returns.
The suggested solutions are first and foremost intended to provide fishermen with realistic alternatives for meeting the requirements of the landings obligation in Europe, as they are preparing for the implementation of the discard ban. The solutions do therefore need to be practical and economically feasible. Along with those suggestions we have also included recommendations for improved on-board handling technologies, which are expected to increase the value of catches regardless of the implementation of the landing obligation.
The solutions focus largely on separating between the target catches and the unwanted catches, and in particular to provide alternatives for processing and storing under Minimum Reference Size Catches, which cannot be utilised for direct human consumption according to the landing obligation of the EU Common Fisheries Policy.