Fisheries Innovation and Sustainability (FIS) invites expressions of interest (EoI) from organisations across the world to take part in two new projects designed to help the Scottish seafood industry plan for a prosperous future.

FIS is the partnership between seafood experts, scientists and Scottish Government to champion practical innovation projects that add value to businesses and communities. Today, FIS announced it will commission two exciting new investigations into greenhouse gas emissions from Scottish fishing vessels, and the digitalisation of the Scottish fishing fleet. These studies will help FIS develop innovations that have tangible benefits for the seafood sector. This request for EoIs begins a two-stage process whereby applicants will be shortlisted for the opportunity to submit a full proposal.

Executive Director Kara Brydson said “FIS projects have industry expertise built-in from the very beginning, so we asked for views on the most pressing innovation needs for Scottish seafood. Our members, which include catchers, processors, and retailers, shortlisted these ‘critical questions’ and invited experts from outside of the seafood world to help us identify what projects could start supporting tomorrow’s industry today. Bringing these heads together led to us think about using digital tools to provide business and research intelligence, and increasing fishing efficiency while reducing emissions.

“FIS’ take on innovation is about shared opportunities and genuine collaboration to try new things. Who knows our industry better than the people driving it, but we also welcome specialists from beyond seafood to help us learn from other sectors and nations. FIS began speaking to stakeholders about their innovation priorities before the global pandemic and we will keep listening as our industry recovers and adapts.”

FIS will commission an inventory of the Scottish fleet to understand greenhouse gas (GHG) emission issues for each sector – for example, the elements in each fleet segment that are the greatest contributors, as well as the greatest contributors by fleet segment. The inventory will inform the development of a practical tool to measure and validate changes in carbon use at an individual vessel level. This knowledge will help promote industry action to reduce GHG emissions, safeguard sector and business reputation, and allow businesses to maintain and access new markets.

FIS will also commission a digitalisation roadmap for Scottish fisheries, including an audit of the fleet’s current and future digital capabilities to provide business and research intelligence to fishers, scientists and managers.  The roadmap must reflect stakeholder priorities and consider all parts of the Scottish fishing fleet, from the in-shore sector through to the largest vessels.

FIS invites Expressions of Interest from all types of organisation capable of generating new knowledge relevant to Scottish fisheries, and ensuring this knowledge can be used to generate change ‘on the water’. The EoI period closes on Monday 14th December 2020. A request for a full proposal will be sent to shortlisted partners by the end of December 2020.

For more details on the new FIS projects, and to submit an Expression of Interest to lead this work, please go to our EoI information page.