Building partnerships to protect fish stocks

Published on: 2 December 2016

University of Exeter research into the effect of warming oceans on fish stocks and the future shape of fisheries has led to a ground-breaking research partnership that is changing the way we fish.

Following a workshop, organised by the University of Exeter’s Professor Steve Simpson, looking at how our fisheries might be in the year 2050, a new Community Interest company was born which is developing a new approach to sustainable fishing.

Sole of Discretion works with fishers who use smaller boats, static nets and hand line fishing techniques. The company pays these fishers a fair price for the fish they land, rewarding fishers to catch fish in more sustainable ways.

Research from Professor Simpson, an Associate Professor in Marine Biology and Global Change, has fed into the approach taken by Sole of Discretion. Fishing is done with as much environmental sensitivity as possible, taking into account changes in fish stocks brought about by warming waters and using fishing methods that reduce by-catch and limit impacts to the environment.

The Sole of Discretion fishers are monitored by students from the University to ensure they are using the best possible fishing methods, also allowing the students to gather valuable data for use in their research.

Related links

» Professor Steve Simpson

» Biosciences
» Fisheries 2050

» Sole of discretion

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