New vessel charter linked to fish sustainability

Friday 17 June 2011, 12:36PM
By Sealord Group Ltd


Positive news about the increased Hoki quota has lead to Sealord chartering a larger vessel. Ocean Dawn arrives in Nelson next week and has 10% more capacity than the vessel it replaces.

Built in Norway in the early 1990’s, the 64m vessel is no stranger to NZ waters and is returning after a stint working in Chile. The Ocean Dawn will replace the charter vessel Independent 1 in the Sealord fleet and create up to four new fishing jobs.

According to Sealord’s General Manager Harvest Operations, Colin Williams, good news about the ongoing sustainability of the NZ Hoki fishery made it prudent to invest in chartering the larger vessel for the next three years.

“The recent increase in TACC (total allowable commercial catch) and current survey data signalling another increase in October have reinforced Sealord’s confidence in the sustainability of the Hoki fishery and this investment is a direct result,” says Colin.

This is good news as Hoki fishing, processing and export is a major part of New Zealand’s seafood export market. Hoki was the country’s second highest value seafood export in 2010, earning $172 million.

“New Zealand seafood is globally recognised as being sustainable and our Hoki fisheries are certified by the Marine Stewardship Council*. Hoki is an excellent choice for environmentally responsible consumers,” says Colin.

The charter of Ocean Dawn coincides with the end of the charter period for Independent 1 and Sealord crew will transfer from one vessel to the other.

The Ocean Dawn will make its first fishing trip for Sealord in late July or early August following sea trials and work to ensure the vessel meets New Zealand Food Safety Authority, Maritime New Zealand and Ministry of Fisheries requirements.