Fishing gear - Working with the sea

Nearly 80% of the Norwegian population lives either on or near the coastline, and so it is natural that the sea has been part of the country’s culture, society and industry throughout its history. Over time, through hands-on experience, innovation and necessity, a high level of fishing gear expertise and know-how has been developed. When it comes to fishing gear, Norwegians know how to get the job done with the highest quality available.

When the sea is your place of employment, the demands are high when it comes to being successful – and safe. No matter what measures the situation calls for, Norwegians offer fishing gear products and services that are tailored to meet customer needs. One reason for this Norwegian success is the respect for time-honoured traditions - combined with a firm commitment to seek improvements and innovative solutions.
 
Norway is well on it way to its goal of becoming one of most innovative countries in the world, finding the sustainable balance between technology and environmental responsibility. As Tore Lundh, former Chairman of the Programme for Industrial Environmental Technology indicates, “We have oil, fish and people in the same pond. Clean and healthy seas are fundamental to life in Norway and its neighbours.”
 
These words ring true when it comes to Norwegian fishing gear companies, shipbuilders and research organizations such as SINTEF Fisheries and Aquaculture, an institute that supports clients in finding solutions to problems throughout the marine value chain. A part of the SINTEF group, this institute looks at the spectrum of activities from biological and marine production – through aquaculture and fisheries, to processing and distribution. Another part of the SINTEF Group is the Norwegian Marine Technology Research Institute (MARINTEK), providing research, development and technical consulting. The environment is top priority for MARINTEK, and the Institute supplies services and support to seafaring vessels to aid in increasing the energy efficiency of their operations. The goal is to have maximum efficiency with the least possible environmental impact, assisting in all phases from technology development to implementation in the marketplace.
 
Financial support for export of capital goods and services is available from the Norwegian Institute for Export Financing, assisting Norwegian companies in reaching their global target markets. Financing of deliveries to the global maritime sector is one of its major areas of activity, and export financing is made available to foreign buyers as an incentive to choose Norwegian suppliers.  

Four out of five Norwegians live on or near the coast, making fishing gear an important industry in this country.
© NSEC/Kjell Ove Storvik

From the Beginning
For thousand of years the Norwegians have been sailing the seas. The building of vessels has long been both a science and an art, and essential for success. These days, the highest level of shipbuilding experience and technology is still readily available all up and down the Norwegian coastline, much of it tailored to the fishing industry. The member organization Norwegian Shipbuilders has their finger on the pulse of shipyard activities, and is a source of valuable information regarding vessels related to the fishing industry.
 
Norwegian Shipbuilders has over 20 member yards with expertise within all areas of shipping, from specially designed new construction to rebuilding and repairs – an important service to the fishing industry. According to Norwegian Shipbuilders’ Kjell Tvedt, “Norway has built a sound reputation within shipping through centuries of experience, and nowhere is this more relevant than within the fishing industry, where soundly constructed vessels are of absolute necessity. Norwegian Shipbuilders and its members stand for only the best and highest quality.”
 
Getting There
One key to successful fishing is to be able to get there – and then to get back home. The heart and soul of fishing vessels includes equipment such as engines, deck equipment, like cables and chains, as well as gearboxes and clutches. To successfully harvest the sea, one needs to get to the destination, and Norway offers a wide range of manoeuvring and propulsion remote control systems. Examples of successful companies include Roll-Royce, Scana Volda, Sleipner Motor and Brunvoll, all names respected for their dedication and technological expertise.
 
Sleipner Motor has been providing thruster systems, hydraulic steering systems and propeller equipment for over 100 years. The company knows that its customers count on them for top-notch consistent professional quality, and Sleipner doesn’t let them down. Brunnvoll’s refined and proven concepts teams up with supreme technical solutions that ensure low lifecycle costs with a wide range of thruster and thruster control systems. Many Norwegian companies within this sector cover a broad spectrum of the outfitting process, such as Karmøy Winch, supplying complete deck machinery packages not only to fishing vessels, but also to oil platforms, tankers, seismic vessels – literally anything that navigates or makes its home on the sea.
 
Cutting-Edge Efficiency
Jeppesen Marine is another cutting-edge Norwegian company that understands that the route to better safety and operations is by increasing efficiency. The company has introduced two new products with this goal in mind, Jeppesen Marine Vessel and Voyage Optimization Services (VVOS) and Jeppesen Marine Pilotage Charts. VVOS is a set of operational decision support tools designed for use in planning safer and more efficient sea travel by taking into consideration key operational objectives such as weather as well as ship response characteristics.
 
The Jeppesen Operations Group is piloting introduction of the new products, and is led by Captain John Horner, who indicates, “You can improve the performance of a ship at any moment and over time through understanding the relationship between speed, power and the marine environment. With the offerings Jeppesen Marine is bringing to the high seas market, this relationship can be better understood and thus improvements in performance and safety can be achieved.” 
 
MMC provides a full range of products that include freezing/chilling, fish
pumping, and distribution systems, grading machines and total packages of fish handling systems for fishing vessels and well boats.
© MMC
Covering all Needs
To improve success in the actual task of finding and securing the fish catch, companies that include Scandinavian Control Systems, Nofi, Morenot and MMC supply quality gear within the areas of fish detection systems, trawling, longlining and hauling equipment. Companies such as the Refa Frøystad Group supply a wide range of quality products that include deck equipment, ropes, nets, and trawling equipment. The company is typically Norwegian – built on a combination of tradition and innovation – and good solid quality.
 
To increase safety and effectiveness, Norwegian companies such as Trane & Trane, Jotron and Navico provide state-of-the-art software and hardware that cover communication and navigation needs, such as alarm, monitoring and control. Then, once the catch is made, Norwegian expertise and equipment is in place with fish handling systems, ice plants, fish grading systems, with companies such as Optimar and Finsam supplying the full range of equipment necessary.
 
Tradition & History
The positive effect of Mustad products is global. Witness the fact that in some regions of the world, the name Mustad is the actual name used for the fishing hook. This is a compliment to a business that has been built up with care and quality since before the 1870s, when the company was first recognized as Norway’s first multinational corporation. Through an ongoing attention to detail and efficiency combined with creativity and innovation, Mustad has developed a globally known and respected fishing system, a system that is as environmentally friendly as it is sustainable within the areas of deep sea systems, coastal systems, jigging, hooks, lines, bait and a wide range of accessories. Mustad Longline is a high-profile name on the world market. The company manufactures and sells equipment for the longline fleet world wide and has more than a 90% market share.
 
All told, Mustad products are sold and distributed in more than 160 markets worldwide and is one of the best known brand names in the world of fishing gear. The focus on the environment and the effect that the fishing industry can have upon nature is important in all elements of Mustad product development. According to the Managing Director Christian Hedløv Engh, “Mustad strongly promotes responsible and sustainable fishing. We help our customers in getting the right fish, at the right age, in the best   condition, in the most cost-efficient manner, with the highest degree of crew safety and with the least environmental waste.”
 
Handling the Catch
Clearly a critical element of the seafood industry is the ability to immediately initiate proper handling once the catch is made. MMC is a Norwegian company specializing in fish handling systems for the seafood and aquaculture industry. The company provides innovative solutions that cover the entire spectrum from the open sea until ready for end consumer. Flexibility and adaptability are key words in MMC’s product development strategy.
 
According to Sales Manager Steinar Torvik, “MMC companies and products have long traditions in serving the leading fishing and fish farming industry in Norway, Europe, Chile and other regions. MMC products are varied and include OPTIFLUX RSW plants, plate freezers and refrigeration in general, fish pumping and distribution systems, grading machines, total packages for well boat fish handling system and a wide range of other products. Our success is rooted in the fact that we are customer oriented. We supply the right solutions, and support our customer 24 hours a day, every day of the year.” 
 
Mustad is globally known for fishing gear excellence with products in over
160 markets worldwide.
© Mustad

Chilling Out
Finsam is another Norwegian company with roots deep in tradition and expertise. Established more than 70 years ago, the company began the development and manufacturing of ice machines in 1962 and today is known throughout the world for its quality ice-makers and full-size production plants. Finsam Refrigeration is a subsidiary of the Finsam Group, and has two main areas of activities, including the design and manufacture of customized containers and ice-plants designed for either land-based operations or for use on ships.
 
Keeping up with customer needs is an important element of success in any industry, and the ever-evolving fishing industry is no exception. Optimar is a company that takes innovation seriously, focusing on fish handling with care from when the catch is hauled on board until it is ready for distribution to the market. Products include conveyor, autofreeze and palletizing systems, as well as pelagic fish and onboard processing.
 
As one of the world’s leading manufacturers of fish processing equipment, Optimar offers everything from single installations adapted to existing systems to complete systems. One key to Optimar’s success is based in its ongoing product development, providing customers with what they require, supporting fishing fleet operations as well as onshore activities, with custom solutions for the pelagic, whitefish and fish farming industries.
 
Keeping Afloat
There is perhaps nothing that typifies fishing gear more than buoys, floats and fenders, and one needs look no further than Norway to find the world’s leading supplier. Provinor’s two major lines of products, Polyform and Scanmarin, are respected worldwide for quality and user friendliness. According to Herbert Gartz, Provinor Marketing Manager, “Throughout the years, Provinor has kept abreast of the changing needs of the fishing industry, something that has enabled us to maintain a satisfied network of customers worldwide.”
 
Polyform was established in 1955 and was the world’s first manufacturer of rotational moulded, inflatable plastic buoys. Company products are exported to more than 60 countries, and worldwide service is offered through a well-established, international network of importers, distributors and dealers. Provinor’s Scanmarin is the originator of the famous ‘black top’ ropehold brands and is a world leader within the inflatable buoys and fenders product areas. A wide range of other Norwegian companies are expert within this product area, including the Refa Frøystad Group, Egersund Trål, Eidsvik & Steffenssen and Fenconor.
 
    
Jotron’s Global Maritime Distress & Safety System, known as GMDSS, was put into force in 1992 by IMO and is in wide use globally.
Keeping in Tune
Communication at sea can make the difference between success and failure, or in the most extreme cases, between life and death. Jotron is a Norwegian company doing a global business providing communication products for all type vessels, from commercial to pleasure to the most advanced fishing vessels. According to Marketing Director Magnus Vold, “Jotron’s success is rooted in innovation, development of communication products that are at the forefront of the R&D process, based on IMO regulations and the SOLAS convention of 1974. This often leads to Jotron products being adapted and integrated into use far outside of Norwegian borders.”
 
Jotron’s Global Maritime Distress & Safety System, known as GMDSS, was put into force in 1992 by IMO. This meant that for all ships covered by the SOLAS convention there was a mandatory requirement to install one 406 MHz float-free EPIRB, two radar transponders and portable VHF’s. Since the integration of GMDSS, Jotron has been a major supplier of the specified emergency radio equipment necessary to fulfil these requirements.
 
AnCom is another Norwegian company who makes it its business to help seafaring vessels and crew keep in touch. As one of the world’s leading companies in the field of ferrite antenna technology, AnCom aims to continue its success by offering the best technology, innovative solutions, tested systems and breakthrough applications. Ancom’s patented antennae have a number of unique attributes, making these products flexible in their applications. Product attributes include their virtually isotropic functionality, extremely small dimensions, as well as magnetic “near field”.
 
The Norwegian poet Alexander Kielland wrote that Norwegians “live their entire lives with their faces turned towards the sea”, a challenge to be faced - and overcome - with preparation and foresight. Fishing gear companies in this country have met the challenge with innovation, knowledge and practical solutions, and have been successful in developing a global market spanning the range of fishing gear products and services. Their success is rooted in a long tradition of hands-on experience that has been developed with the goal of solving problems, creating solutions – and finding the fish. Look to Norway for fishing gear, for high quality, innovative solutions and support where and when you need it.

Polyform is known as being the world’s first manufacturer of rotational moulded, inflatable plastic buoys.
© Polyform


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