ISSF Skippers Workshops bring tuna fishers together with marine scientists for participatory sessions — at key fishing ports worldwide — to share ideas and information on best practices to reduce bycatch.

Skippers workshops are an important component of ISSF’s mission. Held throughout the year at major ports in the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian Oceans, ISSF workshops have welcomed crew members from vessels fishing under more than 25 national flags.

In 2018, we conducted three workshops in South America, one in North America, one in Asia, three in Europe, six in Oceania, and two in Africa. We visited Prigi and Pekalongan in Indonesia; Dakar, Senegal; and Yaizu, Japan, for the first time.

Fishers’ workshop attendance helps tuna vessels — and the companies that purchase, process, trade, or market their tuna — to better meet certain sustainability goals and international market standards. Skippers workshop attendance also meets the requirement for ISSF conservation measure 3.4.

Workshops Open to Fishers & Other Stakeholders

Since 2009, we have hosted 90 workshops attracting more than 3,600 purse seine skippers, crew, ship-owners, fleet managers, and cannery managers as well as scientists and government officials. We also have hosted seabird and sea turtle workshops for longline skippers. Dr. Jefferson Murua of AZTI Tecnalia leads the workshop program. 

Fishers attending our workshops recognize the short- and long-term importance of maintaining tuna stocks at healthy levels. They also have committed to help reduce fishing’s environmental impacts — including by learning release techniques for sharkssea turtles, manta rays, and other marine species of conservation concern. To complement our in-person workshops, ISSF offers a guidebooks siteworkshop videos, and other skippers resources.

Recent workshops have focused on marine litter reduction from FAD fishing, including FAD retrieval. Our report ISSF 2019-01: ISSF Skippers’ Workshops Round 8 provides an update on the program’s results last year. We also have reports on our biodegradable FAD design workshops in Spain and Ghana.

Our infographic shows workshop participation by participant role through 2018. ISSF skippers workshops have received support from the Gordon and Betty Moore FoundationCommon Oceans ABNJ Tuna Project, and the International Seafood Sustainability Association

Skippers Workshops

Many skippers, other crew, ship owners, fleet managers, fleet representatives, officials, and scientists have attended our workshops to date.

April 9, 2019Manta, Ecuador64 participants
May 3, 2019Jakarta, Indonesia30 participants
May 6, 2019Sibolga, Indonesia31 participants
June 10, 2019Mazatlan, Mexico20 participants
June 26-27, 2019General Santos, Philippines (incl. biodegradable FADs workshop)32 participants
July 1-2, 2019Majuro, Marshall Islands8 participants
Feb. 26-27, 2018Accra, Ghana (biodegradable FADs)77 participants
April 11, 2018Majuro, Marshall Islands 27 participants
May 7, 2018Bitung (Sulawesi), Indonesia51 participants
May 9, 2018Prigi (Java), Indonesia31 participants
May 11, 2018Pekalongan (Java), Indonesia45 participants
June 11, 2018Dakar, Senegal (biodegradable FADs)18 participants
July 16, 2018Vigo, Spain89 participants
August 14, 2018Manta, Ecuador135 participants
August 16, 2018Panama City, Panama12 participants
August 20, 2018San Diego, U.S.A.15 participants
August 28-31, 2018Yaizu, Japan29 participants
October 1, 2018Lima, Peru54 participants
October 15, 2018Concarneau, France24 participants
November 15-22, 2018Sukarrieta, Spain75 participants
Jan. 10-11, 2017Manta, Ecuador117 participants
Feb. 21, 2017Tema, Ghana56 participants
Mar. 27, 2017San Diego, U.S.A.19 participants
April 3, 2017Majuro, Marshall Islands11 participants
April 3-11, 2017Sulawesi & Molucca Islands, Indonesia136 participants
April 6, 2017Pohnpei, Micronesia19 participants
Aug. 1, 2017Zhoushan, China24 participants
Aug. 10, 2017Vigo, Spain92 participants
Sept. 4-19, 2017Sibolga, Lampulo, & Jakarta, Indonesia105 participants
Sept. 29, 2017Lima, Peru38 participants
Oct. 4, 2017Manta, Ecuador72 participants
Oct. 9, 2017Concarneau, France38 participants
Oct. 16-20, 2017Sukarrieta, Spain51 participants