Net gains for fish farming
Global consumption of seafood has doubled since the 1960s and in the EU alone fishing fleets catch two to three times more fish than our oceans can sustainably support. Aquaculture, farming of fish and shelllfish, can help alleviate the pressure on fish populations but fish farms must be responsibly and sustainably managed.
This new best practice guide from WWF and RSA is designed to help small and medium sized fish-farmers, particularly those who are new to the industry. The first in the series provides practical guidance on installing and maintaining nets at fish farms.
Despite being crucial to fish farming, nets are often the weakest component in an aquaculture system. Holes in nets can be caused, for example, by improper installation, snagging and by being bitten by predators . Holes allow fish to escape resulting in considerable financial loss to fish farmers but also have an impact on local wild fish populations. The guide helps farmers identify and manage these risks. For instance, it encourages farmers to inspect their nets frequently and repair small holes as soon as possible with coloured thread, so that damaged netting can be easily identified and replaced.
RSA is one of the world’s leading marine insurers and provides cover to aquaculture customers around the world. Reducing risk to customers is vital for their businesses and the environment. WWF has been instrumental in developing certification standards for aquaculture that reduce or eliminate key environmental and social impacts. The standards will be managed by the Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC).