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PFA introduces students to pelagic fishing

15 March 2022

PFA introduces students to pelagic fishing


The Pelagic Freezer-trawler Association (PFA) often shares the story behind pelagic fishing with different stakeholders. Recently, PFA’s Chief Science Officer Martin Pastoors gave introductions to students from two different universities. All kinds of different topics were included in lectures and discussions: safety on board, education, research, innovation and communication.


The first physical lecture since the COVID pandemic was given by Martin Pastoors at the Wageningen University & Research campus in February 2022. This guest lecture was part of the study course named Sustainability in Fish and Seafood Production.


With his presentation, Martin Pastoors aimed to illustrate the collaboration between the fishing industry and science, which is an important element for sustainable management of fish stocks. After a short introduction of the history of pelagic fishing, the group of around 45 students gained more insight into the technology, science and sustainability of the PFA. For example: the PFA-self sampling programme, vessel acoustics, and improving fisheries selectivity. In addition, also the role of PFA members and their crew on pelagic freezer-trawlers to collect all this new sources of information was highlighted.


Martin Pastoors: “Fishers can be the eyes and the ears at sea. The data, information and knowledge of fishers result in audits, evaluations and reports that are essential to maintain a sustainable fishery for pelagic fish stocks. Because this collaboration is so important, the results are always returned to the practitioners on sea.”


Friday March 4th, 2022, the PFA together with the Dutch Fishing Association for demersal fisheries hosted an introductions to the fishing sector for students from the University of Van Hall Larenstein at the office of PFA-member Cornelis Vrolijk in the harbour of IJmuiden. The introductions were part of the minor Sustainable Fishing and Aquaculture.


After a presentation of Martin Pastoors, in which several research projects of the PFA were discussed, the students were given the opportunity to visit an actual freezer-trawler. For more than an hour they were shown around by the first officer of the vessel 'Alina'. The students were introduced to the different characteristics of a pelagic freezer-trawler: after a visit to the bridge, the freezing and processing facilities were examined.


After the tour, the students had the opportunity to ask questions about the presentations and their visit onboard. On behalf of the PFA, Martin Pastoors and Communication officer Patrick Bruinink answered all questions from the students and teachers of Van Hall Larenstein.


The PFA is always happy to tell you more about the projects that we are involved in.


Are you a student and do you have questions about our research activities? Please feel free to contact Mr Martin Pastoors - Chief Science Officer PFA.


You can find more information on our research page.



PFA represents the interests of nine European freezer-trawler companies involved in pelagic fishing activities for human consumption.

Learn more about the PFA policy of sustainable and responsible production.

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