Trawling has always presented some challenges. The award-winning ECOFIVE solution from Bluewild is an ambitious venture that maintains high catch quality and is now being realised in a factory trawler developed by Ulstein Design & Solutions. An explanatory animation in this article describes the catch solution.
Trawling has always presented some challenges. During the hauling of the trawl, fish can sustain crush injuries, abrasions, and blood stains. In addition, when dumped straight into dry reception enclosures, the fish dies quickly and the blood will be captured in the muscle tissue.
How is the catch handled in the ECOFIVE solution?
In the ECOFIVE solution, the trawl fork is raised, stopping the trawl net from moving athwartships to avoid crushing hazards for the crew. The catch remains in the net in the water.
The trawl ring is guided into a groove in the trawl fork.
Only when the rear gate is lowered there will be a need for manual labour. The crew can safely release the front part of the trawl from the bag and connect the splitting strap from the cod-end to the wire that runs over the A-frame. The trawl fork is lowered down the trawl slip, forcing the trawl ring towards it. The A-frame will then lift the cod-end to guide the catch forward towards the intake, enabling an even catch flow directly into the water-filled receiving tank. The valve is opened and the catch brought in.
With such gentle handling of the catch, there is no risk of the catch being crushed when dragged over the stern ramp or suffering fall injuries. The catch is kept alive, circulating in water, until the processing takes place using well-boat technology, which provides higher product quality.
The solution will reduce stress and mortality rates, resulting in less blood in the flesh and, therefore, a product of higher quality.
Safety for the crew
When the cod-end is emptied, the valve is closed, and the trawl fork returns up the trawl slip. With low forces in the trawl, it is safe for the crew to move to the trawl fork to reattach the trawl net and release the trawl ring.
Steady flow into the factory
It will also be easier to handle catch volume variations and maintain a steady flow into the factory. As a result, the vessel's capacity will be better utilised, and there will be less strain on the crew.
ECOFIVE marks a shift that can make the entire fishing fleet greener. The ECOFIVE trawler has been developed by Bluewild and Ulstein Design & Solutions and is being realised in cooperation with many companies in the maritime cluster. It won the Innovation Award at the Nor-Fishing Exhibition in 2022 and was named Ship of the Year at the Nor-Shipping Exhibition in 2023. The trawler is being constructed at Westcon.
Please contact us for more information