Fishermen from Foyle Fishermen’s Co-op in Greencastle, Co. Donegal, are now active members of BIM’s Fishing For Litter (FFL) programme.

Foyle FFL

Frances O’Dwyer, BIM; Patrick Jnr McClenaghan; Oscar McClenaghan; Frank McDermott, Harbour Master; Catherine Barrett, BIM; John D O’Kane, Manager, Foyle Co-op; James Harkin; Mo Mathies, BIM

 Funded under the European Maritime Fisheries Fund (EMFF), this simple but effective programme provides fishermen with bags to collect marine litter while fishing and to bring it ashore for appropriate disposal and recycling on land.

All seven fishing vessels in the Co-op have signed up to the environmental initiative, highlighting their commitment to greener fishing policies.

“There is a pride among fishermen and the local community here in Greencastle, and this pride will continue to drive our focus on environmental responsibility,” remarked John O’Kane, Manager of Foyle Fishermen’s Co-op.

Announcing the Co-op’s membership, BIM’s chief executive, Jim O’Toole said that environmental sustainability was a priority for BIM and the fishing industry:

“Participation in this initiative can gain recognition for member vessels and their crews as Fishing for Litter contributes to BIM’s certification and sustainability programmes and Bord Bia’s Origin Green sustainability charter. The programme has already resulted in the retrieval of 10 tonnes of marine waste. I would like to congratulate and recognise the members of Foyle Fishermen’s Co-op and Greencastle’s Harbourmaster, Frank Mc Dermott, for their dedication to this programme and other environmental initiatives.”

In conjunction with Donegal County Council and the harbour management, Greencastle fishing port is already a significant contributor to BIM’s Fishing Net Recycling programme where nets are dismantled into components for recycling, diverted away from landfill.

To date, the port has recycled six tonnes of fishing nets. Co-op member, Pat McClenaghan, MFV Foyle Warrior, won ‘Best New Fishing Practice’ in the BIM National Awards 2016 — one of three vessels awarded third-party certification to BIM’s Responsibly Sourced Seafood scheme.

Five fishing ports are participating in the ‘Fishing for Litter’ programme; another three are expected to join later this year.

Further information: Catherine Barrett on 01-2144251 or [email protected]