Síldarvinnslan, has reported that the Icelandic mackerel season has picked-up since the end of last week as July 2020 drew to a close. Photo: Skagafréittir
Icelandic fish processors, Síldarvinnslan, has reported that mackerel season has picked-up since the end of last week as the month of July drew to a close.
On Wednesday, 29 July, the Icelandic mackerel fleet were finding it difficult to hit good number but since the Bjarni Ólafsson AK, owned by the company Runólf Hallfreðsson, arrived in the port of Neskaupstaður on Friday, 31 July with about 960 tons of mackerel, the fishing has become more regular with boats hitting good number. But on the down side the boats are finding the good number more than 300 miles from Neskaupstaður.
In recent days, with the mackerel fishing flourishing, the activities at Síldarvinnslan’s fish processing plant in Neskaupstaður have transformed.
During the mackerel season, all emphasis is placed on food processing. So far, large mackerel have come ashore and there has been a considerable amount of meat in them. However, Síldarvinnslan has reported that in the past few days vessels have been receiving mackerel weighing less than 500 grams.
The mackerel has been processed in various ways; most of the fish have been decapitated and frozen, but also frozen and filleted.
The fish factory works in shifts and there are three shifts. There are about 25 employees on each shift as well as foremen and craftsmen. There are 12-hour shifts and in a full shift month when raw material collection is continuous, each employee works about 20 shifts. This is a lot of work but the income is good. The mackerel season is expected to last until mid-September, when fishing and processing of Norwegian-Icelandic herring is expected to begin, so shift work at the fish processing plant should not be completed until the end of October.
Hákon Ernuson, human resources manager at Síldarvinnslan, says that it has gone well to hire staff for the season that began in early July. Now, on the other hand, people need to be hired from mid-August, when schoolchildren disappear from the field, but people have reacted with little interest in the jobs. Very few applications have been received and he is very concerned about the state of affairs. “I thought it would not be difficult to fill these jobs in the employment situation that prevails in the country, but for some reason they do not seem to be interested,” says Hákon.
Source: Síldarvinnslan hf