Towards a new era of support for SSF and aquaculture in Europe

Towards a new era of support for small-scale fisheries and aquaculture in Europe

June 23-24, 2023 I Brest, France

Workshop report

By Eider Graner, Benjamin Dudouet, Hélène Buchholzer, and Katia Frangoudes

On June 23-24, 2023, the international workshop ‘Towards a New Era of Support for Small-Scale Fisheries and Aquaculture in Europe’ was held in Brest, France. The workshop was co-organized by UMR 6308 AMURE (University of Western Brittany, France) and Too Big To Ignore (TBTI) Global network, with the support of ISBLUE, Ocean Frontier Institute (OFI) Module I, SEAWISE project (H2020), and AKTEA – the European network of women in fisheries. Held in collaboration with the Belmont Forum project Fish to Sustainability (F2S), coordinated by the French Institute of Research and Development (IRD), the workshop contributed to the closing events of the International Year of Artisanal Fisheries and Aquaculture (IYAFA 2022), which took place in various countries and regions around the world. Recognizing the important role of small-scale fisheries in Europe, and around the world, the workshop brought together researchers, representatives of NGOs and CSOs, fisheries authorities, Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) and fisheries managers, fishers, students and other experts with a goal to share insights about current challenges and to brainstorm potential actions for the future of small-scale fisheries and aquaculture in Europe. A total of 59 people participated in this two-day workshop.

On the first day of the workshop, international and French scientists, specializing in small-scale fisheries, with diverse backgrounds including biology, ecology, sociology, anthropology, economy, geography, and philosophy, shared their research and initiatives related to small-scale fisheries in their respected countries. The day started with the global picture by Ratana Chuenpagdee, followed by presentations about Colombia, Ecuador, Nigeria, Kenya, Madagascar, Spain, Portugal, Norway, Sweden, France, and French overseas regions. Afterwards, participants exchanged ideas and opinions about the main challenges for the future of small-scale fisheries and aquaculture in Europe. The second day was tailored to facilitate exchange of information and opinions between local fishers, European fishers and other participants. Simultaneous translation (French-English) was provided throughout the day. The day began with a discussion about the diversity of small-scale fisheries and how it varied according to the country and type of fishing gear. The conversation then turned to how the participants viewed and imagined the future of small-scale fisheries and aquaculture, and concluded with the exploration of potential pathways forward. The workshop was a great success, thanks to the effort of young researchers from the University of Brest and IFREMER, Eider Graner and Benjamin Dudouet, who facilitated the discussion, with the support of Katia Frangoudes and the contribution of other PhD and Master students of UMR AMURE.