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, 2019 Manta, Ecuador 64 participants
May 3, 2019 Jakarta, Indonesia 30 participants
May 6, 2019 Sibolga, Indonesia 31 participants
June 10, 2019 Mazatlan, Mexico 20 participants
June 26-27, 2019 General Santos, Philippines (incl. biodegradable FADs workshop) 32 participants
July 1-2, 2019 Majuro, Marshall Islands 8 participants
Aug. 30, 2019 Manta, Ecuador 173 participants
Sept. 5, 2019 Zadar, Croatia (biodegradable FADs)  
Feb. 26-27, 2018 Accra, Ghana (biodegradable FADs) 77 participants
April 11, 2018 Majuro, Marshall Islands  27 participants
May 7, 2018 Bitung (Sulawesi), Indonesia 51 participants
May 9, 2018 Prigi (Java), Indonesia 31 participants
May 11, 2018 Pekalongan (Java), Indonesia 45 participants
June 11, 2018 Dakar, Senegal (biodegradable FADs) 18 participants
July 16, 2018 Vigo, Spain 89 participants
August 14, 2018 Manta, Ecuador 135 participants
August 16, 2018 Panama City, Panama 12 participants
August 20, 2018 San Diego, U.S.A. 15 participants
August 28-31, 2018 Yaizu, Japan 29 participants
October 1, 2018 Lima, Peru 54 participants
October 15, 2018 Concarneau, France 24 participants
November 15-22, 2018 Sukarrieta, Spain 75 participants
Jan. 10-11, 2017 Manta, Ecuador 117 participants
Feb. 21, 2017 Tema, Ghana 56 participants
Mar. 27, 2017 San Diego, U.S.A. 19 participants
April 3, 2017 Majuro, Marshall Islands 11 participants
April 3-11, 2017 Sulawesi & Molucca Islands, Indonesia 136 participants
April 6, 2017 Pohnpei, Micronesia 19 participants
Aug. 1, 2017 Zhoushan, China 24 participants
Aug. 10, 2017 Vigo, Spain 92 participants
Sept. 4-19, 2017 Sibolga, Lampulo, & Jakarta, Indonesia 105 participants
Sept. 29, 2017 Lima, Peru 38 participants
Oct. 4, 2017 Manta, Ecuador 72 participants
Oct. 9, 2017 Concarneau, France 38 participants
Oct. 16-20, 2017 Sukarrieta, Spain 51 participants