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Identification and recommendations on innovative, applicable and practical solutions for on-board handling of unavoidable unwanted catches

Viðarsson, Jónas R.; Einarsson, Marvin I.; Ragnarsson, Sigurður Ö.

Larsen, Erling; Villarreal, Begoña Perez; Zárate, Alberto Gonzalez; Chastagnol, Bruno Iñarra; Needle, Coby; Moret, Kelly; Manuel, Heather; Arason, Sigurjón

Executive Summary

This document is the second deliverable in work package 5 of the DiscardLess project. The project is intended to contribute to a successful implementation of the landing obligation of the reformed Common Fisheries Policy of the EU. The work package 5 addresses how unwanted, unavoidable catches can be handled on-board the fishing vessels i.e. from catch to first sale. The objective of this deliverable is to identify available alternatives and recommend the most applicable solutions for on-board handling of these unwanted, unavoidable catches for four different fleet segments in three case studies. The case studies are North Sea, Bay of Biscay and Northeast Atlantic (Iceland and UK), but the selection of vessels has taken into consideration transferability to other European fleets and areas. Practical and cost efficient solutions are identified, adapted and developed for four different fleet segments based on input from different tasks in the project (1.4, 5.1, 6.1 & 6.2) and stakeholder interaction. The fleet segments selected are 10-15 meter hook & line coastal vessels typically operated in Northeast Atlantic, 18-30 meter Danish seine/bottom trawl vessels typically operated in the North Sea and adjacent areas, 34-44 meter Bay of Biscay bottom trawlers typically operated by the Spanish fleet and finally 40-60 meter fresh-fish bottom trawlers used by most EU offshore fleets.

Solutions for sorting, bleeding, cleaning, chilling, pre-processing, storing and other on-board handling are suggested and evaluated based on need, cost and applicability. Some parts of the work include elements of technological innovation, but most rely on exploiting currently available solutions, applying “best practice” technology and knowledge. Recommended solutions are presented on deck-plans (drawings) in order for stakeholders to get a clearer picture of the suggested changes.

The work presented in this report focuses on the four previously mentioned fleet types that provide a relatively good cross-section of important EU fleets that are to be heavily affected by the landing obligation. It includes reviewing current setup of on-board handling where discarding is allowed and then identifies solutions applicable for those fleet types under a discard ban. The main challenges are connected to catches of juvenile fish, which cannot be utilised for direct human consumption. A number of alternatives are identified for each fleet segment and the most applicable solutions are discussed and demonstrated in detail e.g. in deck-plans, mas-balance calculations, cost/benefit assessment etc.

This is DiscardLess Project Delliverable Report 5.2 towards Strategies for the gradual elimination of discards in European fisheries.
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