The services comprise of the provision of technical expertise to develop and trial commercially applicable alternative viable and sustainable commercial bait solutions for the Irish whelk pot fishery.
The successful tenderer will engage with Irish stakeholders through Fisheries Improvement Projects (FIP), the Contracting Authority and relevant researchers to clearly identify industry requirements and use current baseline knowledge on alternative baits to progress the most appropriate solutions for the sector. The ideal outcome from the project is the development of a safe, sustainable, cost effective synthetic bait that matches/surpasses the performance of traditional whole crab bait. This will require a capacity to assess whelk behaviour and physiology, undertake appropriate chemical analysis, and the ability to produce and test products that will perform under challenging commercial conditions. If a fully synthetic bait is not developed, an appropriate outcome should be the development of a viable formed bait using sustainable, safe, readily available seafood co-products held with an effective binder and enriched with small-molecule attractants that enhance bait performance.