Subfishing area, fishing base, subdistrict and district jurisdiction in Southeast Sulawesi.
The Indonesian blue swimming crab fishery developed rapidly during the 1990s to become an important source of income for coastal communities. The blue swimming crab (BSC) in 2015 is the third highest export commodity in Indonesia, primarily to USA markets. Southeast (SE) Sulawesi is a relatively minor area for blue swimming crab production (approximately 1200–2000 mt per annum), in which only a subset of Asosiasi Pengelolaan Rajungan Indonesia (APRI) members are active, and it may be a conducive region in which to conduct a pilot activity to form a fisheries management structure that demonstrates the benefits that can be achieved via collaboration. The control document (CD) is a traceability and documentation process to be implemented by all of the segments of the supply chain (collectors/cooking stations, miniplants, and processors) in order to promote compliance to new Ministry and Marine Affair (MMAF) regulations and generate the records and documents of the supply chain application and verification of the new regulations. The self-recorded logbook by the fishermen and miniplant, as the point in the supply chain, could help with a meaningful and long-term solution to the fishery management in Southeast Sulawesi. This is the first trial of CD in Indonesia and could be a good model for BSC fishery in other region in Indonesia.
- control document
The coastal waters of Indonesia are a biodiversity repository of global importance. Coastal waters, and the ecosystems they contain, are also essential to the health and subsistence of coastal Indonesian communities. Indonesia’s fisheries are open access, and in combination with increasing populations, increased demand, and increased access to international seafood markets, this has resulted in overfishing of coastal and offshore fisheries. Since the 1980s, overfishing in Indonesia has led to serial depletion of coastal resources, and some fishing communities have started using fishing techniques that damage habitats. Overfishing started in the west of the Indonesian archipelago, moved to the east, and from shallow coastal to deeper offshore waters. Usually, overfishing first affects the larger species, which means that coastal waters are now nearly depleted of large piscivorous fish [1, 2]. Overfishing in coastal waters is now considered one of the main threats to marine biodiversity in Indonesia. Because fish stocks have been depleted, fishing families are now struggling to survive as they experience a decline in their food security and income level. As each local resource declines, fishing communities are forced to find yet another resource, either by traveling further afield in the hope of finding less depleted resources or by adopting more effective, but generally more expensive and often destructive fishing techniques.
USAID-Indonesia Marine and Climate Support (IMACS) Project is assisting Ministry and Marine Affair (MMAF) and local fishery agencies (DKP) to strengthen fisheries management and to abate overfishing [Asosiasi Pengelolaan Rajungan Indonesia (APRI) 2015]. A means to do this is to put in place systems that enable local management on a fishery-by-fishery basis, as opposed to centralized management of a large area that comprises various fisheries. At a local level, stakeholder groups need to be formed to take a role in fishery management. Such groups must include fishers, traders, plant owners, and regulators (government officials), and the group must have the support of stock assessment experts. Furthermore, a monitoring system must be put in place to provide data for a basic stock assessment and to inform harvest control rules.
Through support of the National Fisheries Institute (NFI) Crab Council of US importers, the Indonesian Blue Swimming Crab Association or Asosiasi Pengelolaan Rajungan Indonesia (APRI) has been driving the blue swimming crab (BSC) sustainability initiative in Indonesia since 2007. APRI is an industry trade association comprised of blue swimming crab (Portunidae: Portunus pelagicus) processors and exporters. The fishery directly employs more than 65,000 fishermen and 130,000 women working in miniplants and factories. The BSC fisheries indirectly impact thousands of others from miniplant owners, gear manufacturers, middlemen, ice vendors, and fisher communities. APRI members campaign sustainable crab harvest to the supply chain through protecting immature stocks and allowing crab to grow to mature size, collaborating with Universities, fishery scientists, and eNGOs, supporting the MMAF to develop a National Fishery Management Framework, and working closely with fishers’ community to establish community-based fishery management (CBFM).
The Indonesian BSC fishery can be categorized as coastal and small scale, which developed rapidly during the 1990s to become an important source of income for coastal communities. Over the last decade, approximately 20,000 mt per annum of BSC has been exported, primarily to USA markets, which are now demanding that the product’s sustainability be certified. However, since 2008, government and industry production figures show that landings, and the average size of BSCs being caught, have been declining. This trend is following trends in region where BSC fisheries developed earlier and where catches have now declined to very low levels due to overfishing and might be also overfished. The trends in the Indonesian BSC fishery are already threatening the profitability and sustainability of the fishery, which is effectively controlled by a small, well-organized group of processing companies that have effectively structured themselves into an industry association (APRI), and who are growing increasingly interested and active in regard to making their fishery sustainable.
The BSC species of Indonesia as well as in South-East Asia region is P. pelagicus (Portunidae) and one among of this species complex known previously are: P. armatus of Australia, P. reticulatus at western Andaman Sea and P. segnis at western Indian Ocean . This species is likely those and some of portunid species, which has high productivity, rapid growth rates (i.e., [4–8]), and low intrinsic vulnerability to fishing by using fuzzy logic expert system criteria . International experience shows that due to their high productivity, rapid growth rates, and low intrinsic vulnerability to fishing, depleted BSC stocks can recover quickly by maintaining and restoring both immature size crabs and breeding population in the stock. The biological characteristics of BSC, the coherent organized nature of the industry, and its reliance on sustainability conscious export markets make the BSC fishery strategic for beginning the process of developing models for the collaborative management of coastal fisheries.
Southeast (SE) Sulawesi is an important pilot area for the IMACS project in that approximately 1200–2000 mt per annum of blue swimming crab are caught. Meetings between APRI and IMACS suggest that because SE Sulawesi is a relatively minor area for BSC production, in which only a subset of APRI members are active, it may be a conducive region in which to conduct a pilot activity to form a fisheries management structure that demonstrates the benefits that can be achieved via collaboration. The province is in the center of the Coral Triangle, and successful activities undertaken in the province can be replicated to other provinces and districts.
The livelihoods of coastal fishers and the integrity of the coastal ecosystems go hand in hand. In principle, Indonesia’s coastal fisheries are open access. This means that visiting fishers can nullify any successes in stock recovery that resident fishers may have achieved through improved management . In the situation of the blue swimming crab fishery, however, a large part of the sector is organized in a producer’s organization (APRI). At least 80% of Indonesia’s BSC grow through APRI processors before product go to market. Through this organization, it is possible to control a large part of the fishery, and this means that control can be exerted on fishing behavior and on participation in the fishery. For this reason, a stakeholder group comprising the BSC sector of SE Sulawesi is in a good position to implement effective management in partnership with local government.
The objective of the study was to describing the BSC fishery and the fishery improvement project (FIP) in Southeast Sulawesi, obtaining biological data from landing information at fishermen and miniplants, and was to expand to incorporate catch and effort data derived from fishing vessels. The key point of this project is on the fishermen and the miniplant, where the first chain of the supply, which could be a critical point to control and to trace the BSC. This study was initially focused on self-reporting of catch by fishery stakeholders, establishing a foundation for auditable control documentation and a robust traceability system.
2. Materials and methods
2.1. Study site
Geographical area of main BSC fisheries in SE Sulawesi is Tiworo strait and vicinity. This area is located at western Laut Banda (Banda Sea), part of Fisheries Management Area (FMA) of Indonesia (WPP-RI 714) and FAO Fishing Area 71, western and central Pacific (Figure 1).
2.2. BSC fishery in Southeast Sulawesi and registration system
The BSC fishery was studied based on references and field observations at the local government and direct information from fishermen. The information includes fishermen, miniplants, fishing gear, number of fishing gear, fishing ground, boat (size and length). APRI initiated logbook data collection for both fishers and miniplants. The registered vessel using a unique vessel identifier (UVI) number that tagged onto the boat, for example, APRI-IMACS-001. The registration system is initially following the Kartu Nelayan (Fishermen Card) implemented by the Ministry of Marine Affair and Fisheries. However, most fishermen do not have their KTP (Indonesian ID). So, we registered the fishermen based on their miniplants. The owners of the miniplant list their fishermen, and then, fishermen were asked their availability for their participation during data trial collection. This process was conducted before, during and after training for logbook. Each fisherman was asking about their profile including where they sell their catch, boat type and size, number of fishing gear.
2.3. Logbook system
The fishermen filled the logbook independently or assisted by enumerator at each site. Depending on the area, fishermen usually sell their catch to supplier or directly to miniplants. At each miniplant, we also give a logbook. We have identified from the beginning the fishermen with their supplier or miniplant. Fishery logbooks detailed including vessel UVI, gear type, gear volume, soak time, landing port, target specie volume, primary and secondary species, liters of gas used, and fishing effort cost. Miniplant logbooks detailed include Fisher UVI, gear type, volume of raw material received, crabs with egg-bearing females, and crabs at minimum legal size (MLS). The data from each fishermen and miniplant were collected by enumerators and those data were sent to APRI enumerator managers.
2.4. Fishermen perception
Pre- and post-tests were conducted before and after training, as a basis for evaluation. The question includes the following: catch record and fishing gears in 3–5 years, the basic knowledge of blue swimming crab biology, the awareness of ministerial decree, the catch composition (number of berried female), and the needs of management for BSC.
2.5. Consequence analysis of the BSC stock
Implementation of UVI numbers for vessels, fisher logbooks, and miniplant logbooks are the building blocks by which blue swimming crab fisheries can have a transparent and auditable control document (CD) system. Data collection program by incorporating catch and effort data derived from fishing vessels. Lastly information derived from fisher logbooks will contribute to assessing fishery impacts to retained, by-catch, and ETP species, as well as ecosystems and habitats using Marine Stewardship Council (MSCs) risk-based framework (RBF) methodology . Consequence analysis (CA) was used to score data-deficiency for stock status outcome. Consequence of the fishing activity on the most vulnerable subcomponent was determined by the stakeholder input during the workshop, using quantitative and qualitative biological indicator data.
3. Results and discussion
3.1. BSC fishery in Southeast Sulawesi
Crab harvesters in Southeast Sulawesi using boats of 12 m length, 0.7 m of width and 0.3–0.5 m of height. Some fishermen do not own a boat and a boat can be used by two different fishermen. Meanwhile, the exact number of fishermen is uncertain, but is approximately 3500. The number of boats involved in the SE Sulawesi BSC fisheries in 2013 was 2311 among which 1239 non-powered <1 GT boats, 964 small boats with outboard engine, and 108 powered <5 GT boats (Data Management Commission 2014 in APRI and USAID-IMACS 2014) [13–15].
The BSC is mostly caught with trap and bottom gillnet. The fishing gear used is depending of fishing ground characteristics, but according to stakeholders met during the site visit, trap is the fishing gear the most used for both shallow and deep water (<10 m and >10 m depth, respectively). Meanwhile, gillnet is commonly used for crab fishing at deep water. The BSC is also a retained species in other fisheries such as those using trawl, trammel nets, and seine nets (APRI and USAID-IMACS 2014). The traps used are mostly collapsible or folding traps, round or square form and depending of the locality, with a size of 30–40 cm × 30 cm × 20 cm and mesh size nets of 1 inch. The trap limit is the capacity of the boat. One fisher carries about 100–200 traps connected to a main line, with an average of 150 traps/boat/harvester (IMACS 2013 in APRI and USAID-IMACS 2014). Traps are baited with fish pieces and are usually soaked overnight. Bottom gillnets used are monofilament of 100 m length and 80 cm height per-set, with mesh size of 3.5–4.5 inches. There is no limit of the number of gillnets used, but a fisherman usually soaks 5–20 sets of nets. Soaking time is typically 11–13 h.
|No.||Subfishing area||Fishing base||Subdistrict||District/city|
|1||Eastern Kendari Bay||Bungkutoko village||East Kendari||Kendari City|
|2||Kolono Bay||Puupi||Kolono||Konawe Selatan|
|3||Northeast (NE) Tiworo strait|
|a. Lahia Bay||Pamandati and Polewali village||Lainea||Konawe Selatan|
|b. Renda island and Tampo waters||Renda island and Tampo||Napabalano||Muna|
|4||Southern Tiworo strait|
|a. Maginti, Gala and Pajala waters||Pajala and Gala island||Maginti||Muna Barat|
|b. Bangko waters||Bangko island||Tiworo Selatan||Muna Barat|
|5||Northern Buton strait||Raha||Raha||Raha|
|6||Western Tiworo strait||Kasipute||–||Bombana|
The fishing areas are located in coastal waters of the Tiworo strait and vicinity. Based on the fisher base and landing based of caught crabs, there is several subfishing fishing areas at Tiworo strait and vicinity (Table 1 and Figure 2).
Management arrangement of Southeast BSC fisheries is under regulation of Ministry and Marine Affair (MMAF) of Indonesia. The regulation, such as minimum legal size (MLS) of crab, is 100 mm (10 cm) carapace width and prohibit to catch berried female (Minister Decree No. 1, year 2015), which is effectively applied in January 2016. During January–December 2015, it is prohibit catching individual BSC below 55 g (Minister Circular Letter No. 18, year 2015). The BSC is also prohibiting to catching Under Minister Decree No. 2, year 2015, also restricted to catch by trawl.
3.2. Logbooks and unique vessel identifier (UVI), and training
APRI initiated logbook data collection for both fishers and miniplants, as well as compile a vessel registry of 208 participants using a unique vessel identifier (UVI) number that tagged onto the boat. APRI, with the assistance of Survival Fisheries Partnership (SFP), Haluoleo University (UHO), and DKP Kendari conducted a training program for miniplant logbooks, fisher logbooks, and UVI numbers. A total of 208 vessels were registered with UVI numbers, the correlating fishers working on those vessels were trained to fill-in logbooks. A total of 12 miniplants were trained to fill-in miniplant logbooks at their receiving centers (Table 2). Fishers and miniplants were trained during the same event. In all, there were five training sessions across the province.
|Location||Fishers #||Miniplant #|
|Pajala and Pulau Gala, Muna||34||3|
|Pulau Bangko, Muna||26||2|
|Pamandati, Konawe Selatan||38||1|
The training objectives were to (1) record raw material going through the supply chain as a basis for the control document, (2) investigate catch composition with regard to ecosystem impacts, and (3) train fishermen and miniplant on how to fill in the logbook itself. The training was organized to achieve the training objectives. The training includes theory on the importance of blue swimming crab management trough data collection to see the impact to the ecosystem and also to see catch composition, and the dynamics of BSC as well. Fishermen and miniplants owner were giving the materials by experts, in order to give the understanding why we need management on the BSC. They were asking their support to participate on the IFISH program, and they were taught on how to fill the logbook. From data that will be collected, that is time departed to and back from fishing area, type and number of gear that used and gasoline consumption per trip per day. From the data, we can analyze how the business status. It will formulated and find solution whether need conservation area to protect BSC from distinction.
Pre- and post-tests were conducted before and after training, as a basis for evaluation (Figure 3). Based on the test, most fishermen said their catch within 3–5 years was declining; even some of them have increased their fishing gear number. They have changing their mind after the training about the extinction of BSC with over exploitation. Most fishermen agree with the current regulation on minimum landing size and egg berried female. The test also shows their lack of knowledge on the impact of catching of egg-berried female, and how many potential crab will be lost if they are caught.
The fishermen and miniplants owner are ready and support the management of blue swimming crab in SE Sulawesi and are willing to participate in the IFISH program. Over all, the training seems change the perception of the fishermen.
3.3. Consequence analysis of the BSC stock
As a result of data documentation by fishermen and miniplants, the consequence analysis (CA) was used to score data deficiency for stock status outcome. Consequence of the fishing activity on the most vulnerable subcomponent was determined by the stakeholder input during the workshop, using quantitative and qualitative biological indicator data (Table 3) .
|Principle 1: stock status outcome||Scoring element||Consequence subcomponent||Consequence score|
|Tiworo strait and vicinity blue swimming crab fisheries||Portunus pelagicus||Population size||60|
|Principle 1: stock status outcome||Scoring element|
|Rationale for most vulnerable subcomponent||Population size as well as reproductive capacity and age/size structure was considered almost equal vulnerable subcomponent based on the impact of exploitation pattern and biomass|
|Rationale for consequence score|
Based on available data and information collected from the field and the RBF workshop, the fully RBF assessment could not be conducted and not feasible yet, this report act as pre-assessment RBF. High productivity and low intrinsic vulnerability to fishing of the BSC seem to be not guaranteeing on stock rebuilding and might relate to overcapacity, offspring survival, and recruitment succeeds, as well as the BSC habitat quality. The current study recommends continuing: (1) recording of the BSC CPUE data and incorporating to non-targeted species for both number of individual and weight, where non-targeted catches are recorded at species level and family level in some cases; (2) recording daily, monthly, and annually catches BSC for each fishery; (3) mapping spatial-temporal fishing ground and spatial-temporal community structure at the BSC fishing area; (4) mapping vulnerable habitat, the high potential BSC nursery habitat, and its environmental quality status; and (5) stock rebuilding could be by integrated management, that is, reducing fishing effort and ban minitrawl fishery, increasing the BSC reproduction capacity, protect the high potential and sufficient wide area of the BSC nursery habitat.
3.4. APRI’s role on control document and audit system
Asosiasi Pengelolaan Rajungan Indonesia (APRI) is an industry trade association comprised of blue swimming crab processors and exporters. The fishery directly employs more than 65,000 fishermen and 130,000 women working in miniplants and factories. Blue swimming crab fisheries indirectly impact thousands of others from miniplant owners, gear manufacturers, middlemen, ice vendors, and fisher communities. Through support of the NFI Crab Council (US importers), APRI has been driving the sustainability initiative for blue swimming crab fisheries in Indonesia since 2007. The overarching goal of APRI’s sustainability efforts is to operate their fisheries on par with the MSC standard. Through initiating a fishery improvement project (FIP), APRI has supported cross-sectorial roundtable to address fishery management, fishery research, and stock assessment data collection. APRI advocates fishery policies based on good science so that crab resources remain productive and the fishery viable in the future. APRI collaborates with NGO’s, Universities, fishery scientists, and the Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries (MMAF). Key to their strategy has been to develop a national fishery management framework and then working closely with fisher community stakeholders to establish. APRI’s members cover more than 80% of the export volume and could be a beneficial for controlling the fishery.
The BSC fishery industry is happening in Southeast Sulawesi for a long time; however, lack of knowledge observed in the fishermen, in terms of the biology of the crabs. From the training, we observe that they do not know about the importance on why we need to manage the crabs. The trends in the Indonesian blue swimming crab fishery are already threatening the profitability and sustainability of the fishery, which is effectively controlled by a small, well-organized group of processing companies that have effectively structured themselves into an industry association (APRI), and who are growing increasingly interested and active in regard to making their fishery sustainable.
Since early 2015, APRI together with NFI Crab Council and SFP have been crafting and trialing a control document (CD) system. In order to strengthen compliance among producers and facilitate the supply chain’s accountability, traceability, and verification, the CD gives buyers new tools to use with their suppliers to verify that the products being traded are from legitimate producers operating in legal fisheries and that the gear employed and the captures landed are compliant with local and international regulations. The control document specifies that not only does a particular shipment/product bought need to be legal within national regulations, it further requires that the entire product the supplier handles, for all customers, is legal also. The CD comprises three components that ensure its successful application: (a) a letter of warranty or private contract that requires legal trading of fish products along the entire commercial chain; (b) a list of control points that conform to the full regulatory and legal framework relevant to the fish products marketed; and (c) a guide to a third-party audit mechanism, which lists the main control check points, from producer to retailer, and identifies recognized and reputable independent auditing bodies. CDs are adopted on a voluntary basis by those producers, traders, and/or suppliers that wish to ensure a sustainable supply of marine products to responsible consumers all over the world, while combating IUU effectively and supporting livelihoods in producer countries. The supply chain participating in the process needs to agree on the penalties framework, including full and potentially permanent exclusion from the supply chain for violators of the CD stipulations (e.g., suppliers can be delisted due to failure or refusal of an audit and denied contracts until compliance is verified at their cost). The CD is a traceability and documentation process to be implemented by all of the segments of the supply chain (collectors/cooking stations, miniplants, and processors) in order to promote compliance to new MMAF regulations and generate the records and documents of the supply chain application and verification of the new regulations [11, 12].
The BSC fishery industry is happening in Southeast Sulawesi for a long time; however, lack of knowledge observed in the fishermen, in terms of the biology of the crabs. From the training, we observed that they have lack of information about the importance on why we need to manage the crabs. The key point of this industry is on the fishermen and the miniplant, where the first chain of the supply, which could be a critical point to control and to trace the BSC. This study was the first effort in Indonesia that initially focuses on self-reporting of catch by fishery stakeholders, establishing a foundation for auditable control documentation and a robust traceability system. The self-recorded logbook by the fishermen and miniplant, as the point in the supply chain, could help with a meaningful and long-term solution to the fishery management in Southeast Sulawesi. The control document can support the implementation of Ministerial Decree on minimum landing size and ban of specific fishing gear. The study in SE Sulawesi could be a good model for BSC fishery in other region in Indonesia.
The study was supported by IMACS USAID (Subcontract No. IMACS-APRI-01), The Government of Southeast Sulawesi, and The Data Management Committee (DMC) Kendari. We are grateful to Jeremy Crawford for his assistance on this project (2015).