The latest purse seiner in the French tuna fleet, the 77 metre, 1400 cubic metre capacity Gevred, sailed from Concarneau on Wednesday to start fishing off West Africa.
Gevred was built at the Astilleros de Murueta yard in Spain and is the first of a pair, with sister vessel Pendruc due to be delivered this summer. The addition of these two new purse seiners brings the fleet of operating company CFTO up to fifteen tuna purse seiners fishing for skipjack and yellowfin.
Although it is largely a classic design, Gevred includes plenty of new technology, including the use of variable frequency converters to help keep down energy consumption levels and to improve fuel economy.
Gevred sails with eight French crew and sixteen crew from west Africa, where the French tuna fleet has traditionally recruited much of its crews and Gevred has two full crews who rotate time at sea.
Skipper Joel André said that he expects to start fishing off western Africa, before taking the new vessel to the Indian Ocean to operate from the Seychelles.