Purse seine fishing is a consistent and efficient method, enabling fishers to catch and freeze large quantities of tuna.

Purse-seine vessels fish either by spotting free-swimming schools of tuna or by utilizing floating objects that attract fish, either with natural or manmade objects such as fish aggregating devices (FADs).


  • About 66% – Percentage of tuna caught globally each year by purse-seine vessels
  • 1,721 – Estimated number of purse-seine vessels authorized to fish for tuna
  • 696 – Number of purse-seine vessels that are “large scale” (335 m3 fish hold volume or greater) and fishing for tropical tuna


When fishing on free-swimming schools, purse-seine vessels have an average bycatch rate of less than 1%. When utilizing FADs, purse-seine vessels have bycatch rates from around 1% in the Eastern Pacific to nearly 9.5% in the Atlantic.


According to an ISSF-commissioned study, purse seine vessels consume 368 liters of fuel in order to land one ton of tuna.

See Purse-Seine-related News