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European Climate, Infrastructure and Environment Executive Agency

Catching the Potential: Setting the Standard for Sustainable Fishing

Catching the Potential (CTP) aims to develop a European standard for sustainable fisheries training.


The fishing industry has drastically changed in the past decades. Fishers are confronted with new regulations, technological innovations, the effects of climate change, new maritime users, competition with farmed seafood products and an increasing demand for responsible and sustainable seafood. To continue to successfully operate in a changing society and the changing fishing sector, competences of those working in the sector need to evolve and grow.

Catching the Potential (CTP) aims to develop a European standard for sustainable fisheries training, equipping fishers with the knowledge and skills to take their responsibility in making fisheries more sustainable. Through the establishment of an international network of fishing academies and training institutes, CTP facilitates the exchange of best practices and training methods. The national and regional specific needs are also targeted and considered, in close cooperation with local partners and authorities.

CTP is conducting sustainable fisheries training pilots in seven different European countries covering various sea basins. The project created a network of trainers in Europe that can deliver the sustainable fisheries training and exchange best practices and experiences.

It set up local networks consisting of scientists, policymakers, NGOs and training institutes which adjust the training to the local context (e.g. target species, culture, fishing techniques) and ensure continuation of sustainable fisheries training after the end of the project.

The project’s target is to have seven country-specific sustainable fisheries trainings, at least 70 trainers and local network stakeholders trained through the 'train-the-trainer' programme, as well as at least 500 (future) fishers trained. Based on the pilot experiences, CTP also aims at developing an international standard for sustainable fisheries training and implementing it as widely and mandatory as possible, for example through the inclusion of the sustainability training in the international training requirements for fishers (STCW-F).

To know more about CTP’s activities and training content check their project website which includes downloadable informative leaflets, newsletters and more.