NEW BEDFORD, MA / ACCESSWIRE / May 30, 2023 / The newest, most modern vessel in the New England groundfish fishery, the F/V Nobska, has returned to port after its successful inaugural deployment. The vessel was acquired earlier this year by Blue Harvest Fisheries, as part of the company's investment in the future of its groundfish operations.
The Nobska embarked on four back-to-back trips between April 7 and May 10, and landed 335,000 pounds of fish in its home port of New Bedford, Massachusetts, with additional landings in Gloucester, Massachusetts. The catch included several groundfish species, including monkfish, flounder, haddock, Acadian redfish, hake, and pollock. A series of three to four back-to-back trips, followed by a short break for maintenance and crew rest, is a typical operational plan for this vessel.
The Nobska sailed under the leadership of Captain Aldie Leeman, and with the same crew as before the Blue Harvest Fisheries acquisition.
'We're very pleased with the performance of the Nobska on its maiden voyage, and are excited to see its future potential,' said Chip Wilson, CEO of Blue Harvest Fisheries. 'We are confident in the future of the groundfish fishery, and vessels like the Nobska are an important part of that future.'
Blue Harvest Fisheries acquired the Nobska in February from Maine, where it previously operated as the Francis Dawn. Built in 2019, it is a state-of-the-art vessel that replaces an older Blue Harvest Fisheries vessel, also named the Nobska. It includes features like a modern electronics system, and a slurry ice/vat system for the fish hold that allows it to keep groundfish fresher for longer.
'This is the first step in implementing our long-term investment strategy for groundfish,' said Wilson. 'With these investments Blue Harvest Fisheries will be able to consistently offer high-quality groundfish, like those just landed by the Nobska.'
Blue Harvest is also making plans to launch a sixth groundfish vessel, the Schelvis (named after the Dutch word for haddock). With a registered length of 85', and gross tonnage of 175 tons, Schelvis was purchased as part of the company's 2020 acquisition of 12 vessels and 27 fishing permits from the Carlos Rafael family. The vessel, which never fished under the Rafael family ownership, will make its first Blue Harvest Fisheries voyage upon completion of a $1.9 million upgrade. The Schelvis will be run by Captain Luke deWildt, who has 25 years of industry experience. He was previously captain of the F/V Teresa Marie III for 18 years, the last four under Blue Harvest Fisheries ownership.
Captain deWildt stated that he is 'looking forward to the utilizing the upgrades on this newly renovated vessel,' which represents the newest class of vessels in the fishery. It will be safer for his crew, and with state-of-the-art equipment and electronics, he expects the Schelvis to be among the top performing vessels in the fishery.
About Blue Harvest Fisheries
Blue Harvest Fisheries is a leading harvester of premium quality seafood sustainably caught from MSC certified fisheries in the United States. The company operates its own fleet of groundfish vessels as well as offload facilities in New Bedford and Fairhaven, Massachusetts. Blue Harvest Fisheries supplies haddock, ocean perch (Acadian redfish) and Atlantic pollock (saithe) as well as other groundfish harvested in the waters off New England.
Stove Boat Communications
SOURCE: Blue Harvest Fisheries
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