NFFO Services is the commercial division of the National Federation of Fishermen’s Organisations (NFFO), the representative body for fishermen in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
NFFO Services is a company registered in the UK, dedicated to the provision of effective marine support based upon fisheries liaison and guardship services to other offshore sectors including oil/gas and renewable energy. By providing professional liaison and guard vessel support, the potential for conflict between the fishing/shipping sectors and the operation of offshore locations is kept to a minimum.
NFFO Services was established in 1984 for the provision of liaison services to the offshore oil and gas sector. Construction and installation of pipelines or platforms risked impacting fishing operations but negotiations between the NFFO and oil exploration and development companies identified that liaison, and collaboration rather than confrontation formed a pathway to solutions founded on co-existence.
By drawing on the experience and knowledge of skippers as fisheries liaison officers and where necessary at particularly hazardous sites, fishing vessels as guard boats, effective communications could be maintained between the developer and the various forms of fishing and other marine traffic in the area. Over time this collaborative arrangement has been demonstrated to be an extremely effective means of reducing frictions between other offshore sectors and the fishing industry during the development and construction phase of offshore development.
It is testimony to the success of this collaborative approach that despite the large scale developments in the North Sea and later the Irish Sea, the areas of direct conflict between the two industries over 35 years have been minimal.
The savings in disrupted operations and damaged fishing gear and subsea equipment have been incalculable, not to mention the primary objective of preventing loss of life and/or injury.
As we move into an era characterised by marine spatial planning, there is tremendous value in learning from best practice and the success of the liaison arrangements between the oil and gas and fishing industry sets an example for other offshore sectors to follow.
Benefiting the Whole Industry
The income generated through contracts awarded to NFFO Services has provided many fishing vessels with a welcome boost during difficult periods when they would otherwise be disrupted or displaced.
It has also allowed the NFFO to establish a charity, in the form of the NFFO Training Trust, which helps new generations of fishermen to achieve appropriate industry certification. Our liaison officers and guard-ship masters have developed considerable expertise and professionalism in establishing effective liaison and communication built from their knowledge of the fishing industry.
As part of the NFFO, we also work through partnerships and industry-to-industry forums to ensure our seas stay safe for all marine industries.
If you do not find the information you are looking for on this website or have any other questions, please feel free to contact us directly for further information about NFFO Services Ltd.