Data loading...

OPAGAG And ANABAC To Replace All FADs By The End Of 2012

According to a news report by the website FIS, the 2 Spanish purse seiner organizations ANABAC and OPAGAG have committed to “replace all FADs for new more selective models by the end of 2012”. The Spanish tuna fleet promised to take measures to minimize to the utmost the impact of purse seine fishing on non-target species.

The National Association of Tuna Freezer Vessel (ANABAC) and the Associate Producer of Big Tuna Freezer Organization (OPAGAC), integrated into the Spanish Fisheries Confederation (CEPESCA), presented in Sukarrieta (Vizcaya) a joint strategy for fisheries sustainability for the Spanish purse seiners.

The news report says that the presidents of both organizations, Jose Luis Telletxea and Jon Uria, respectively, along with General Secretary of CEPESCA, Javier Garat, approved the application to the whole fleet of a joint strategy for a sustainable purse seine fishery.

After several years of research, both associations intend, together with the Spanish Institute of Oceanography (IEO) and the Technology Centre Expert in Marine and Food Research (AZTI-Tecnalia), to provide practical solutions and techniques that minimize the effects of this fishery on the ecosystem.

Proponents of this strategy hope to improve the manoeuvres performed in the purse seine fishery, which is performed with school aggregators (FAD) “in all the oceans of the world to improve gear selectivity and develop a more responsible and sustainable fishery to further reduce by-catch, especially sea turtles and sharks”, CEPESCA press release informs.

According to the FIS article, the Spanish fleet has developed a ‘code of good practice’ supported by the design of new FADs to prevent the entanglement of non-target species, and the 2 organizations  announced their commitment to replace all FADs for new more selective models by the end of 2012.

They have also implemented a technical manual on the release of associated non – target species and will implement a management system of FADs by the introduction of a logbook for the collection of catch and the result of the release manoeuvre.

With the implementation of these measures the fleet intends to continue improving responsible and sustainable management of the purse seine fishery.

OPAGAC and ANABAC also agreed to establish a review committee, which will meet once a year to review the code of practice for tuna responsible purse processing.

According to Garat, this is a pioneering initiative within the European Union (EU), being an example of the Spanish fishing sector’s commitment to sustainable management of fisheries resources.

“The tuna organizations will take this management model of the purse seine fishery to the Spanish government, the EU institutions and to all the regional fisheries organizations to make it accessible to the entire world fleet and contribute with their experience to fisheries more
respectful of the marine environment”, said CEPESCA.