Evaluating Diver-Assisted Sea Urchin Harvesting Technology
The Canadian Centre for Fisheries Innovation (CCFI) has approved a project partnership with Miawpukek Horizon Maritime Services Ltd. to evaluate the efficacy of the novel C Robotics patented diver-assisted C Disc technology for the harvesting of sea urchins. The project will consist of design evaluation at the Centre for Sustainable Aquatic Resources’ flume tank located at the Marine Institute; a comparison of traditional scuba diver and C Disc assisted harvesting efficiency and effort; and, an assessment of the quality and size selectivity of harvests. Overall, the project will prove the safety, environmental sensitivity, and efficacy of the new approach. The technology hopes to demonstrate an innovation to enable the sustainable and commercially viable harvesting of sea urchins in Newfoundland and Labrador. Currently harvesting is typically a late fall and winter fishery, which provides environmental challenges to divers. Providing a technology that makes the harvesting safer and more time efficient will be a benefit to this fishery. “We are excited to work with Miawpukek Horizon in bringing this innovative technology to our region,” commented Keith Hutchings, Managing Director, CCFI. “The proposed technology could be extremely beneficial to this fishery and possible others. We look to build on our partnership with Miawpukek First Nation and work collectively on other initiatives that fully align with CCFI’s mission of enabling leading edge research, innovation and technology in Canadian Seafood Industry.” Rune Svendsen, CEO of C Robotics comments, “It is exciting to follow the demonstration projects we completed with both Akvaplan-Niva and NOFIMA in Norway, with the Canadian Centre for Fisheries Innovation. Our team is very confident of our technology and look forward to assisting with the introduction in Canada.” Miawpukek Horizon Director, Shayne McDonald adds, “The Miawpukek First Nation continues to innovate and look at best fisheries management solutions. Not only does this solution provide interesting opportunities for Miawpukek owned fisheries, but provides an opportunity to support other hand harvested fisheries across Canada. It is an excellent opportunity to help First Nations participate in the Blue Economy and efficiently harvest their respective licenses.”

About Canadian Centre for Fisheries Innovation

The Canadian Centre for Fisheries Innovation (CCFI) is a not-for-profit Separately Incorporated Entity (SIE) of Memorial University. Since 1989, CCFI has supported industry related projects to drive innovation and technological advancements in solving industry problems related to the efficiency and profitability of those involved in the sectors. The Centre actively promotes research and development in the aquaculture, capture fishing, and fish processing sectors while utilizing both the human and facilities assets and resources of the Marine Institute, Memorial, and other academic and research institutions. CCFI works directly with industry to facilitate access to scientific and technological facilities to create projects that will immediately look to answer and/or address industry questions and work toward the adoption of new scientific data, technologies, and product developing knowledge. The Centre will collaborate with industry, funding agencies, and academic institutions to identify and secure the needed funding share arrangement for all partners.

About Miawpukek Horizon Maritime Services Ltd.

iawpukek Horizon Maritime Services Ltd. (MHMS) is an Indigenous Business operating in Atlantic Canada that was created to service emerging opportunities in the local marine industry within the Atlantic Region. MHMS is a company that has evolved from a relationship that started with the recruitment and development of First Nations seafarers from the Miawpukek First Nation, as Horizon Maritime sought to expand its seafarer network and further diversify its workforce. Miawpukek seafarers have become valued members of the Horizon Maritime team and strong relationships between Miawpukek Tribal Council and Horizon Maritime principals have developed as a result.

About C Robotics

C Robotics were founded in 2017, and are based in Kristiansund, Norway. Behind the company stands entrepreneurs with experience from establishing successful businesses within international trade and operations. The C Bud and C Disc harvesting products are based on well proven technology. The team consists of people with extensive experience from the subsea industry (Oil&Gas) and the technical understanding, combined with hands on experience from marine operations, put the team in a unique position to take a practical approach to Innovation. With a global requirement for new harvesting techniques to ensure a sustainable and ethical future, the company’s objective is to develop an effective method for the harvesting of marine species from the seabed.