In communities all along Ireland’s coast, sea fishing is an important focus of economic life, providing jobs, income and investment, while playing a key role in local identity.
There are many different types of commercial fishing engaged in. Smaller boats will work close to the shore, heading out and returning on the same day with fresh catches. But then there are larger fishing boats, right up to supertrawlers, that will spend days or weeks at sea, with large crews, combining deckhands, mechanics, engineers, right up to a captain. These ships can be complex, high tech operations, demanding a variety of technical skills and experience.
On a fishing vessel, there are lots of different employment opportunities including deckhand, steering and lookout duties, maintenance of fishing gear and on-board equipment. If hands-on work and the feel of the salt spray in you face are your idea of healthy outdoor work, this is for you.
Sustainability is vitally important to fishing, not catching fish faster than their stocks can be replenished, so that the industry and the communities they sustain have a future.
All the fish that has been caught also need to be processed. There are large factory ships capable of carrying out this processing at sea, but in Ireland, most seafood processing happens on shore creating even more jobs in the handling, distribution and processing of the fish. Activity is concentrated around the coast, especially in the counties of Galway, Kerry, and Donegal.