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Synergy Supports Governance for Snapper and Grouper Fisheries Sustainable

Pasar Ikan Brondong
Brondong Fish market Pasar Ikan Brondong © Ikan untuk di jual diatas lantai Pasar Ikan Brondong, Lamongan Jawa Timur Indonesia
A fisherman unloads fish from Tetap Setia, a boat participating in TNC's FishFace program at the port in Kema, North Sulawesi, Indonesia. TNC has been working with fishermen aboard midsize fishing boats to develop FishFace technology. FishFace uses facial recognition technology to identify species of caught fish. Scientists use this data to help manage fisheries and to contribute to sustainable fishing practices.
unloads Seorang nelayan sedang mengeluarkan hasil tangkapan ikan. © Ed Wray

With waters reaching 70 percent of the total area, the fisheries sector is one of Indonesia's leading economic potentials. Even though the Covid-19 pandemic is still hitting Indonesia, the Central Statistics Agency noted that the fisheries sector showed positive growth in the second quarter of 2021. Of course, efforts and strategies are needed to manage it sustainably, including the governance of snapper and grouper fisheries. This was the topic of discussion in the webinar “Optimization of Sustainable Fisheries Governance through Measurable and Collaborative Management” organized by the Tropical Landscapes Finance Facility on Tuesday (24/8).

One of the supporting instruments for sustainable governance is the preparation of good and integrated data. Fishermen are important actors who must be involved in fisheries data collection. This initiative was carried out by the Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries (KKP) with the support of Yayasan Konservasi Alam Nusantara (YKAN) through a fish data collection program conducted by fishermen, namely the Crew Operating Data Recording System (CODRS). Currently, the CODRS Program is used to monitor the stock of snapper, grouper, and tuna in real time and to collect stock status data for 50 species of snapper and grouper in 11 Fisheries Management Areas in Indonesia.

“We cooperate with approximately 500 fishing boats to obtain fishery data. Fishermen who helped with data collection were trained to take photos of all fish caught on a measuring board. In our experience, this is much more practical and easier for fishermen than writing and recording fish catches using a pen and notebook. It also reduces the risk of incorrectly identifying fish that often occurs in manual recording using pens and books. Through the data taken by fishermen, an updated picture of snapper and grouper can be obtained. This data is used to support sustainable fisheries management policies,” explained Peter Mous, Director of the YKAN Sustainable Fisheries Program.

Towards Sustainable Governance

The diverse conditions of capture fisheries in Indonesia certainly require the synergy of all stakeholders to realize sustainable governance. “Speaking of capture fisheries in Indonesia, the conditions are multispecies, multihabitat, multigear and multistakeholder. For this reason, synergy, collaboration and harmony are needed to create sustainable governance," explained the Director General of Capture Fisheries at KKP Muhammad Zaini.

Zaini added, the importance of implementing balance in management which is a manifestation of the blue economy principle. This includes the efficiency of natural resources, the application of a balanced economic and social value that does not only focus on profit, as well as being environmentally friendly and sustainable. Examples of the embodiment of these principles in a business model are through environmentally friendly fishing, development of environmentally friendly fish ports, and processing of fishery waste.

In line with this, YKAN Executive Director Herlina Hartanto said that currently YKAN is also working on the Fisheries Improvement Project in collaboration with six member companies of the Indonesian Demersal Association. The companies all agreed to source snapper and grouper from sustainably managed sources.

“Sustainable fisheries management is a mandate of Law Number 41 of 2004 concerning Fisheries. We support MPAs to promote quantifiable fisheries management practices that are supported by valid data. With good management, there will be opportunities for snapper and grouper fisheries to meet the sustainability standards of the Marine Stewardship Council. Information and data need to be used to formulate strategies, plans and more importantly key actions to ensure the sustainability of snapper and grouper fisheries in Indonesia,” concluded Herlina.

Yayasan Konservasi Alam Nusantara (YKAN) is a scientific-based non-profit organization that has been present in Indonesia since 2014. With the mission of protecting lands and waters as life support systems, we provide innovative solutions to realize the harmony of nature and humans through effective natural resource management, prioritizing a non-confrontational approach, and building a network of partnerships with all stakeholders for a sustainable Indonesia. For more information, visit