After a break due to the Covid pandemic, the return of the Holland Fisheries Event, taking place this week in Urk, is a much-anticipated return to normality.
HFE opens at 10.30 on Friday 7th October and continues through Saturday, bringing together suppliers and businesses from across the Netherlands and beyond. The exhibition will be formally opened by Klaas-Jelle Koffeman, chairman of the Stichting Visserijdagen Urk and the Municipality of Urk’s alderman for Fisheries, Economic Affairs and Education Nathanaël Middelkoop.
Recent years have been far from easy ones for the fishing sector as a whole, and the Dutch industry is no exception – coping with the competition for space from the wind energy industry, as well as the after-effects of the pandemic, high fuel costs and other challenges.
‘We are in a completely different situation now than in 2018. Some 60 Dutch vessels are scheduled for scrapping. It’s understandable that this is a depressing prospect. But it’s important to look at opportunities and focus on the fishermen who will continue– because they are the future of fisheries,’ Klaas-Jelle Koffeman said.
‘We should also keep a close eye on developments around the flyshooting and twin-rig fisheries, so we do not suffer the same fate as happened with pulse trawling.’
He commented that opportunities for the future certainly will emerge from the maritime hackathon taking place as part of this year’s Holland Fisheries Event.
‘The young people participating there dare to think out of the box. Let’s give them opportunities! That’s where the future lies. We should also lobby for change, so that in a few years we can move towards building new vessels again. Let’s look at how the Belgians do it. Things have to change and that takes guts.’
On Friday 7th October 14.00 -15.00, a presentation by fisheries research platform OSW will take place on topics including the flyshoot and the kiwi pit. At 19.00, representatives of main sponsor Flynth accountancy advisors will give a lecture on the theme of continuation and innovation in fisheries.
On Saturday 8th October at 9.30, Pedro Rappé will present the DBMatic data system, which collects online information in, on, around and under vessels.
At 11.30 on Saturday morning, the winner of the maritime hackathon will be announced.
The Holland Fisheries Event’s main sponsor, as in previous years, is Flynth, which has advisers and accountants with specialist knowledge for the fishing sector.
The Holland Fisheries Event is free to attend with a valid ticket, and visitors can register here.
The formal opening takes place at 10.30 on Friday morning, with the event open from 11.00 to 21.00. On Saturday the exhibition opens at 09.00 and closes at 15.00.