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From bio-fuels to fisheries promotion: FLAG Österbotten and FLAG Côte Basque-Sud Landes working together

At the end of May, a delegation from Ostrobothnia, Finland, travelled to the Basque region of southwest France to explore opportunities for cooperation around common themes linked to the fisheries and biofuels sectors.
The group, which included two representatives of the Österbotten FLAG and seven members of the personnel from the Novia University of Applied Sciences in Vaasa, was hosted by Mr Frédéric Perrin, the director of the French institute for pure vegetable oils (Institut Français des Huiles Végétales Pures), IFHVP. The visit included meetings with the Côte Basque-Sud Landes FLAG in Saint Jean de Luz and a visit to the Lycée Maritime de Ciboure. The group also visited the University of Deusto in Bilbao and the fish auction in Saint Jean de Luz, and met with the leader of Adour Landes Océane, one of the two Pays represented on the Côte Basque-Sud Landes FLAG.


Download the report: a few months after this visit, the Novia University completed and published a study on the potential of biofuels in small scale fisheries. The report is available in Swedish  and English 

FARNET Newsletter 2013-05

  • Looking to the future: three models for successful delivery
  • Baltic FLAGs join forces
  • Innovative axis 4 project: seawater for fish preservation
  • Axis 4 managing authorities look ahead
  • How axis 4 is making a difference in fisheries areas
  • FLAGs participate in annual LEADER event
  • FARNET Frequently Asked Questions
  • FARNET seminar: Marketing the local catch
  • State of play: 3 706 projects and counting!
  • Forthcoming events and activities
  • Other news

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Cooperation between Europe’s most northerly FLAGs

Two of Europe’s most northerly FLAGs, Tornedalen & Haparanda Archipelago (Sweden) and Gulf of Bothnia (Finland), undertook a study visit to the Northern and Eastern Lapland FLAG area, in the north of Finland, from the 15-17 April.

The visit was hosted by the local FLAG and the Lokka Fishermen’s Cooperative and over the course of the three days the visitors learned about the activities of the cooperative and how it manages to sell fish products from the remote village of Lokka in the north of Finland to markets in the south of the country. They also learned about the benefits in terms of local employment, with whole families sometimes engaged in fishing.

“Presente y futuro del eje 4 en España”, 6th & 7th May 2013

Over 50 participants attended a seminar in Madrid on the 6th and 7th May to discuss the “present and future of Axis 4 in Spain”. Around 30 FLAG representatives as well as representatives from Spain’s coastal regions, national Managing Authority and the European Commission met to discuss the results of the programme to date and how best to ensure that community-led local development is effective in Spain’s fisheries areas in the future. Through a series of presentations of local projects from around Spain and other countries, the first day was aimed at sharing results of the current period and setting objectives for the next. Day 2 focused on more technical issues and, in particular, on how to improve efficiency and effectiveness in the programme going forward. Andres Hermida, Director-General of Fisheries in Spain, expressed his optimism for what local development could offer fisheries communities and drew two key conclusions from the 2 days’ discussions: the importance of reducing eligibility uncertainty for the FLAGs in the future and the necessity to re-launch the national FLAG network.

FARNET Magazine n° 8 : Marketing the local catch

Download n°8 - Spring-Summer 2013      

Marketing the local catch: new opportunities for fisheries areas

Faced with the prospect of rising costs, strict limitations on catch sizes and increasing competition from cheaper imports, more and more fishermen are re-evaluating the market potential of their catch and looking for new and more lucrative distribution channels.Zoom on the new Stockholm fish market (Sweden).

Report: The FLAG fish  

Carp is a flagship product and a driving force for sustainable local development in the Barycz valley (Poland).

Interview: Aigars Laugalis 

Report: An emotional business 

In Salento (Italy), tourism brings some great opportunities for a local fishing sector in search of added value and diversification.

Trade winds

Four innovative, area-based development projects in fisheries areas. 

Spotlight: Delivering results 

FLAGs have to provide evidence that Community-Led Local Development (CLLD) -  Axis 4  in the current period – can foster socio-economic development in a way that cannot be delivered by top-down policies.


FARNET Guide #6: Green Growth in Europe’s Fisheries Areas

Ecosystems are at the centre of all human activities: the quality of freshwater underlies the quality of food production inland; natural coastlines and sand dunes will be key elements in storm and flood prevention; and, of course, without properly functioning marine ecosystems, fish stocks would inevitably collapse and the farming of fish would be impossible. With this 6th edition of the FARNET thematic guides we aim to demonstrate, through both theory and practical examples, how FLAGs can contribute to attractive and profitable fisheries areas while applying some key principles that will help ensure environmentally sustainable development.
We hope that this guide will offer some reflections and ideas which will inspire and motivate Fisheries Local Action Groups (FLAGs) in achieving their goals as drivers of sustainable development in European fisheries areas.

 Download Guide #6


FARNET Newsletter 2013-03

  • Guidance for Member States on community-led local development
  • New fisheries policy takes shape
  • FARNET seminar 2013: marketing the local catch
  • Momentum building in Romania
  • FLAG strengthens links with West African island
  • Fishermen challenge local chefs
  • FLAGs unite for World Fisheries Day
  • Young French filmmakers go fishing
  • State of play: 3646 projects and counting!
  • Forthcoming events and activities
  • Other news

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FARNET Managing Authorities meeting 12-13.03.2013

“The theme of FARNET Managing Authorities meeting on 12-13 March 2013 was “Looking ahead and delivering”. It dealt with issues related to the implementation of the current Axis 4 as well as information and ideas concerning preparation for the future Operational Programmes. Presentations and discussion in small groups focused on: how FLAGs can contribute to the development of the fisheries sector and fisheries areas, the Commission’s guidance on CLLD, draft templates of the Partnership Agreements and Operational Programmes, as well as an exchange on different approaches to eligibility.”


Guidance for Member States on community-led local development - updated

On the 6 February 2013, the European Commission invited around 150 delegates from managing authorities and ministries dealing with the EFF, EAFRD, ERDF and ESF to a meeting to discuss a draft guidance document on community-led local development (CLLD). The document is designed to help Member States to promote CLLD and improve coordination between the four funds. At the meeting, Ernesto Penas Lado, a Director at DG MARE, stressed the importance of CLLD in supporting the local search for solutions to the difficulties faced by the fisheries sector and for opportunities in the area of blue growth. Elisa Roller, Head of Unit, also provided recommendations for improving delivery and “keeping it simple”. A key message for FLAGs and Axis 4 managing authorities is to be proactive in ensuring their needs are reflected in the new Partnership Agreements, which will define how CLLD is delivered in each Member State. More details

FARNET Newsletter 2013-01

  • FLAGs must be proactive in shaping the future
  • Axis 4 Days in France
  • Lithuanian FLAGs prepare for the future
  • Baltic FLAG cooperation
  • Two additional Spanish FLAGs in Cantabria
  • Polish FLAGs cooperate on diversification
  • Fish school for chefs
  • National and international recognition for Axis 4 projects
  • State of play: 303 FLAGs, 2756 projects
  • Forthcoming events and activities
  • Other news

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