Reports

Fishing, grading, processing and marketing of mackerel caught by pelagic vessels / Fishing, grading, processing and marketing of mackerel caught by pelagic vessels

Published:

01/03/2011

Authors:

Ragnheiður Sveinþórsdóttir

Supported by:

AVS Fisheries Research Fund

Fishing, grading, processing and marketing of mackerel caught by pelagic vessels / Fishing, grading, processing and marketing of mackerel caught by pelagic vessels

In 2005, mackerel catches were first registered in Icelandic jurisdiction, although Icelandic vessels did not start fishing for mackerel systematically until 2007, mackerel fishing increased rapidly, but in 2009 fishing rights for mackerel were first limited. During these years, the catch has gone from 232 tonnes to 121 thousand tonnes. Initially, all the catch went to smelting, but in 2010 Icelanders froze 60% of the catch for human consumption. This report discusses fishing and processing of mackerel, equipment needed for mackerel processing for human consumption, handling of catch, measurements of mackerel caught in Icelandic jurisdiction and the market. In the project, samples were collected and measured in shape, gender and fat content. In the summer, mackerel enter Icelandic jurisdiction and are caught with herring, but both species are caught in trawls. When mackerel is processed for human consumption, it is decapitated and gutted, but in order to do so, in addition to the traditional processing line, so-called suction is needed, which sucks the slag from inside the mackerel. Mackerel also needs a longer freezing time than herring due to its cylindrical shape. The mackerel that enters Icelandic waters is often 35-40 cm long and weighs between 300 and 600 g. The main markets for summer-caught mackerel caught in Iceland are in Eastern Europe, where it continues to be processed into more valuable products.

In the year 2005 Icelanders first caught mackerel in Icelandic fishing grounds, but it was not until 2007 that Icelandic vessels began to catch mackerel by purpose. The fishing of mackerel increased fast but in 2009 the government put a limit on the catching. In these years the catch has increased from 232 tons to 121,000 tons. At first, a meal was made from all the catch, but in 2010 60% of the catch was frozen for human consumption. The subject of this report is the fishing and processing of mackerel, mechanisms that are needed to process the mackerel for human consumption, handling of the catch, measurement of mackerels and markets. For this project samples were collected and geometrician measurements performed by qualified staff. In the summer mackerel can be caught in Icelandic fishing grounds together with herring, it´s caught in pelagic trawl. When mackerel are processed for human consumption it´s headed and gutted, to do that a suck has to be used to suck the guts out. Mackerel also need longer time in the freezing device because of their cylindrical shape. The mackerel caught here are often 35‐40 cm long and 300‐600 g of weight. The main markets for mackerel caught during the summer are in Eastern Europe where it's processed into more valuable products.

View report
en_GBEnglish