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Posted 2021-01-22 15:36:49 by

Fishing gear is estimated to represent 27% of marine litter with more than 26,000km of equipment lost in the English Channel area each year. INdIGO is a European funded project that is looking to develop new prototype biodegradable fishing gear for use in the marine environment and to improve the recycling of existing gear at the end of its life.

The project is looking at all aspects of net development including the supply chain, manufacturing, prototype development, testing, technical and economic analysis. Led by the University of Southern Brittany, the project brings together 6 research organisations including CEFAS and the Universities of Portsmouth and Plymouth and four private partners including MSE International in the UK.

The project is currently undertaking research with fishermen on both sides of the Channel to understand if they would be prepared to use biodegradable fishing gear and to find out what their technical requirements would be.

Fishermen are being asked to complete a two-part survey; one via interview and one online in order to ensure that the needs of fishermen will be met in the development of new biodegradable equipment.

In order to understand technical issues, fishermen in the UK are being contacted by CEFAS Fisheries Observers to undertake a 15 minute telephone interview to build an inventory of the types of plastic currently being used in the fishing and aquaculture sectors; any fishermen willing to take part in the survey should contact . The results of this part of the research will allow the project to learn more about abandoned, lost and discarded fishing equipment and it is hoped will  lead to improved recycling options for end of life gear.

The second part of the fishermen’s survey can be completed by fishermen online and will identify what may or may not encourage fishermen to adopt biodegradable fishing gear for marine use. The results from this part of the survey will allow the project partners to optimise the prototype biodegradable fishing gear being developed. The fishermen taking part will then be invited to test the new prototype equipment to give essential feedback. Fishermen are asked to complete this section of the survey online at:

INdIGO receives European funding through the Interreg France (Channel) England programme. To find out more about the INdIGO project, visit the website: or send an email to .

To be kept informed of the INdIGO project findings, events and activities please sign up to the Interest Group at