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Oceans and fisheries
News article11 May 2023Directorate-General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries2 min read

A path to a business in fisheries

Nephrops’ trawl boarded and opened on the sorting table by the fisher with his trainee in the rear, © Solenne Le Guennec
Nephrops’ trawl boarded and opened on the sorting table by the fisher with his trainee in the rear.
© Solenne Le Guennec

Starting a business is not always easy. This is certainly the case in the world of fisheries, where there is so much to know. In France, to help young people enter this old and important trade, the Finistère regional Fisheries and Marine Aquaculture Committee created the EU-funded Pathways to Fisheries project. This 'one-stop shop' helps young people find their way through the maze of information and procedures, complementing the European Year of Skills.

Being new is not easy

The Pathways to Fisheries project guides and informs newcomers to the profession about all the requirements for a career in fisheries, including specific regulations, social aspects, maritime safety and education.

The initiative first saw the light in 2016-2017, when the fisheries committee used its own funds to support individual fishers. Because of its immediate success, the fisheries committee needed more resources to support the project. With funding assistance from the EU, the Pathways project has grown. It now offers individual structured interviews addressing all the topics young fishers need to be aware of when starting up a business.

The project helps those who want to set up a fisheries business to navigate the administrative maze of the fishing sector better

says Solenne Le Guennec from the Fisheries and Marine Aquaculture Committee.

A detailed questionnaire looks into the fishers’ personal background and professional  experience, as well as  the type of business they would like to launch, the licences and vessels they need, and where they plan to fish. The process also helps them connect with local banks, accountants, training institutions and producer organisations.

The programme gives new fishers a clear overview of where their startup process is and what they need to do next. It also gives them the support and training they need to succeed in the fisheries trade.

Helping generational renewal in fisheries

This successful project has already helped around 100 people. 85% of them have successfully settled into fishing careers – a welcome achievement in tackling the issue of generational renewal in the fishing sector.

Other regional fishing committees have noticed the success of the Pathways to Fisheries project in Finistère and are interested in bringing it to their local areas. Part of the EU funding was used to develop a guide that can be shared with them to help them set up similar projects and encourage generational renewal.

The guide is in the final stages of preparation, but keep an eye on Comité Régional des Pêches Maritimes et des Elevages Marins de Bretagne ( and Accueil - CDPMEM 29 - [Comité Départemental des Pêches - Finistère] ( where it will be published.

Did you like this story?

Then also check out the Euronews Ocean episode on blue careers

More information on the project (in French “projet Passerelle Pêche”)

Le projet Passerelle pêche récompensé par l'association Blue Fish - Actualités - CDPMEM 29 - [Comité Départemental des Pêches - Finistère] (

Comité Régional des Pêches Maritimes et des Elevages Marins de Bretagne (