Friday, 29 May 2015

So who caught my fish? - I can tell you says Mrs Rowse!

Here's a story from Australia about the fishermen of New England in the USA - it seems a group of fishermen and scientists have worked together to produce a fish tracing system using QR codes - the idea being that the customer can use their smartphone or tablet to scan in the QR code that will identify which fisherman aboard which boat caught the fish..... 

"AFTER eyeing a piece of haddock on the supermarket counter, a customer scans a code and finds out the fish was caught in the waters of Georges Bank and learns the name of the fishing boat - and maybe even sees a picture of the smiling, rain-slickened fisherman who reeled it in. WELCOME to the future of buying New England seafood.

A group of scientists and fishermen said the technology isn't about a gimmick so much as survival. They're working on a new tool they say will allow consumers to learn the backstory of a piece of fish while standing in the supermarket aisle with their smartphone. 
In an era when many sectors of the New England fishing industry are struggling with depleted resources and choking catch quotas, increasing the cachet of local seafood could be the last, best hope, said Ben Martens, executive director of the Maine Coast Fishermen's Association, one of the groups involved in the "Boat to Plate" project. "Most fishermen don't want to be involved in this kind of stuff. They want to go out into the water," said Martens, whose group represents 35 mostly small-boat fishermen. "We just don't think that's the way of the future."
See the full story here

In a world where customers are increasingly concerned over the providence of the foodstuffs this would seem like a great idea?

Well guess what? - here in 'sleepy' Cornwall the Rowse family and their fleet of crabbers have been using the same system to do exactly the sane job with their skippers and boats!

Each boat has it's own unique code - like the Harriet Eve here:

The Rowse fleet are based in Newlyn and their brown crab and lobsters are landed almost every day by the four boats...

with the Emma Louise being the largest boat in the fleet and a sister ship due later in the summer...

each consignment of brown crab is recorded on landing with where and when the fish were caught and can be traced right back to the skipper and boat it was caught by.