The EU-funded INCOFISH project, coordinated by Rainer Froese, Pew Fellow and project leader and coordinator of FishBase, has created a mobile seafood guide to help consumers buy fish based on whether or not it has been caught in a sustainable way. The guide combines information from 18 different seafood guides produced by the WWF, the Marine Conservation Society, and others with size references for the entire fish or fillet.The information is accessible online via computer or, more importantly, a web-enabled mobile phone, so that it is available anywhere at any time. In developing the tool, scientists have used mainly symbols, with few words, so that the guide will be widely understood.
“We want to enable consumers to contribute to sustainable use of the oceans,” says Dr. Froese of IFM-GEOMAR (The Leibniz Institute of Marine Sciences at the University of Kiel.) ” If demand for overfished seafood species or fish that are too small falls, catching them is no longer worthwhile. We hope that this instrument will be a help to anyone who wants to contribute actively to the protection of the oceans.”
The INCOFISH project, which stands for “Integrating multiple demands on coastal zones with emphasis on aquatic ecosystems and fisheries,” is seeking to study and develop instruments for restoring healthy fish stocks and ecosystems by 2015. This is just one of the goals that was formulated by the World Summit for Sustainable Development. Thirty-six partners from 23 countries all over the world are involved in the research. INCOFISH is supported by the EU’s Sixth Framework Programme (FP6) with nearly €5 million from the ‘International cooperation’ theme.
Source: CORDIS News, 18 December 2008