The Fishmongers’ Company’s Fisheries Charitable Trust and FIS have joined forces to launch an international Fisheries Exchange Programme, to advance global sharing of knowledge around the management of fisheries and the ocean.

Exchanges can be to and from anywhere in the world and can take the form of one-off visits, bilateral exchanges, international workshops, or studentships. Projects will be prioritised if they advance or share knowledge on:

  • Fishing gear innovation which provides environmental benefits
  • Fishing vessel decarbonisation
  • Technology developments which enhance supply chain management, transparency and/or traceability
  • Understanding of applied fisheries research and co-management systems
  • Marine habitat enhancement initiatives.

The Fishmongers’ Company’s exchange programme was launched in 2022 by Fisheries Programme Manager Alison Freeman, and has since supported over 15 exchanges. The exchanges funded to date have been extremely varied, from co-funding a PhD studentship in Tristan Da Cunha, to industry-led exchanges to share knowledge of species specific management, technology, and gear innovation, to funding civil-servants to learn about co-management systems. These exchanges show how powerful it can be to bring likeminded individuals together to share their knowledge and experiences. These engagements have helped nurture strategic partnerships and fuel new projects, which will go on to further our understanding of how to better manage our fisheries and marine ecosystem to accommodate marine life and people.

Since 2016, FIS has championed current and future seafood industry leaders through travel bursaries to support knowledge exchange and professional development. Most recently, last year FIS and the Fishmongers’ Company supported skipper James Duthie Jr to visit Norway to learn about the ship building innovations reducing fishing vessel CO2 emissions, which you can read about here.

We welcome applications from individuals and organisations that work in, or support, the fishing and seafood industry. Funds will be awarded up to £8k per project. It is not a requirement to offer matched-funding support, but it would be looked upon favourably.

How to apply

Interested applicants will need to complete a short application form describing their project and their organisation. Please download a form below, and return it to Alison Freeman, Fisheries Programme Manager: by the end of September.

Please note, the Fishmongers’ Company may decide to publicise grants awarded, and grants may be reported on the Company’s website. There will be no publicity about grants without the organisation’s explicit consent.

I was lucky enough to receive a FIS bursary back in 2018 when I was just starting my career in fisheries. I went to Denmark to explore the mechanisms and tools used to create meaningful and useful relationships between industry, scientists, and decision-makers.

It’s a great opportunity for anyone who works in the fishing sector- the things I learned and the people I met during the exchange had a huge impact on me, and I still apply many of the lessons I learned during the exchange in my work today. – Hannah Fennell, Head of Orkney Fisheries Association. Read about Hannah’s exchange experience here.

Civil servants from the MMO, Defra, and Daera visited the USA to learn about co-management.

Fishmongers’ have funded several exchanges to Anguilla in the Caribbean UK Overseas Territories to help improve their fisheries management.

Human Rights at Sea were funded by the Fishmongers’ Company to visit the Falkland Islands to advocate for better safeguarding on fishing vessels.