In a video conference with Cobden Primary School, NIWA scientist Dr Vicky Webb explains what fish waste is, and why scientists are exploring new ways to use it.
Dr Vicky Webb (Fishing boats go out; they might be deciding they want to look for hoki. So they go out and put their nets down, then pull them in, and it’s like, ‘Hmm … a lot of hoki’ - but also lots of other things they didn’t expect to get. So there’s a big, big wastage of all those lovely fish that are dead when they come up, usually. And also, of course, some people know about fish factories. So when hoki, etc., go down to a fish factory, people there cut off the heads, take the skin off, take the guts out, and take the bones out of it. So you get these lovely fillets that you can buy from the fish shop. But of course probably more than half of the fish actually gets thrown away as waste. So a few years ago we started thinking, ‘There’s got to be a better use. Let’s see if we can find something really useful, that people can make some money out of.’