More research on live storage of caught cod

The Fish Site
by The Fish Site
16 April 2007, at 1:00am

NORWAY - Cod achieves a 30-40 % higher price when it is brought to land live, yet little fish is delivered live. A new international project can explain why.

In Norway, the fishing fleet and industry have a competitive advantage with their proximity to the large fish resources and a large European market within reach.

Live cod – ready to be brought out of the cage.

When cod is stored live, the industry also has the best starting point for delivering top quality.

"Because there are advantages with live fish, it is also important to study why the fishing fleet delivers relatively little live fish, despite the higher prices", says Senior Scientist Bent Dreyer at Fiskeriforskning.

Costs and profits

In the project, an economic model will be developed showing the costs and profits of the fishing fleet by catching live fish.

Today, less than one percent of the total Norwegian cod quota is delivered live. The question becomes: Which factors affect the fishing fleet's catch pattern?

For the fishing fleet, there is a balancing of advantages and disadvantages when catching live fish.

Live catches require more work with handling of the fish, and it takes longer to catch the fish because not as many fish can be caught at the same time.

With live cod, we are guaranteed top quality raw material.

If the vessel has several quotas in different fisheries, it can be difficult for them to take their quotas because of shortness of time.

International collaboration

The project will also provide knowledge about when and how it is most profitable to catch the fish live, and how to utilise the advantages in the markets by storing the fish live.

The scientists at Fiskeriforskning will collaborate with colleagues from Australia and Iceland, where they also have experience with catching and storage of live fish.

The project is a joint effort amongst Fiskeriforskning, the Norwegian College of Fishery Science, the South Australian Research and Development Institute and the Marine Research Institute in Iceland.

The project will span four years and is financed by the Research Council of Norway.