Optifish at a glance

Optimisation of digital catch monitoring and reporting in the European Fisheries

OptiFish aims to develop, test, and validate technologies that will improve onboard monitoring of catch volumes and fish health, enabling fishers to improve the sustainability of their operations, and better meet control requirements. More specifically, the technologies investigated during the project will enable automated species recognition based on AI and computer vision to reduce discards, unreported landings, and unreported fishing activities, establishing a fisheries control and enforcement system fit for the digital age.

Types of fisheries
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Business models
OptiFish Basic Info

Challenges to be addressed

Illegal and unreported

Illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) is a broad term that concerns all aspects and stages of the capture and utilization of fish and can be found in all types and dimensions of fisheries.

Illegal fishing can include fishing without permission in a certain jurisdiction or in violation of specific law or regulations.

Unreported fishing: can include the misreporting or failure to report to the relevant national authority,or failure of the fisheries management to report according to national regulation.

Reliance on human observation
and manual data

Human observation is the primary means of identifying species for discard, while the three main types of administrative documents used by countries require manual data input and include:

logbooks for recording quantities of fish caught,
landing declarations for recording the quantities of each species caught in the landed weight and
sales notes submitted to the national authorities on each landing.

Lack of

Reluctance of fishers & fishing companies to adapt new technologies, either because they do not trust their effectiveness, but largely because of a lack of trust in the institutions that require their data.

Implementation of regulation

New legal regulations and recommended practices affect the conformance of data management processes and AI use in fisheries and the applicability/function of the overlaying systems. Each country’s own way of implementing the landing obligation, making it difficult to establish unified control processes.

Intrusive measures

While technology driven monitoring can eliminate the need for an additional person on board, there is a strong reluctance of fishers to accept onboard cameras that can be watched by authorities.


Ensuring data security is extremely important, as the data collected onboard fishing vessels has both legal and economic significance.

OptiFish approach



Develop reliable and easy to use solutions for fishers & control agencies.


Data Quality

Ensure that collected data is accurate, timely and up to date.


Facilitate Communication

Improve transparency in fisheries management and traceability of fish products.


Build Trust

Engage with stakeholders in the decision-making process to ensure the system is beneficial for all parties.