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New season’s first pearlside landing

Faxi RE is due to Akranes tonight after three days fishing on pearlside. Early this morning they had 500 tonnes on board, so there are hopes that this will be increased once Faxi has taken its last haul before setting course for the 70 nautical mile trip to Akranes.

According to Vilhjálmur Vilhjálmsson, head of HB Grandi’s pelagic division, Ingunn AK has also been fishing around 30 miles south of Reykjanes and earlier today had 300 tonnes of pearlside on board after two days fishing. HB Grandi’s third pelagic vessel, Lundey NS, is due on fishing grounds early tomorrow from Akranes after landing 1370 tonnes of herring caught in Breidafjördur.

Vilhjálmur Vilhjálmsson said that both Faxi and Ingunn have stopped fishing at night, as pearlside appear to be only catchable during daylight hours, which is a similar situation to last year.

Last winter HB Grandi’s factory in Akranes took delivery of 5000 tonnes of pearlside and factory manager Gudmundur Hannesson said that they encountered a few problems with it.

‘Pearlside is an extremely fatty fish, at least at that time, and the oil content took us by surprise. Production was best when the fish had been chilled in slurry ice and when there was a short distance from fishing grounds to here. The freshness of the fish makes a big difference to the production ashore. But we have made some changes to our production with the intention of separating out as much liquid as possible straight away, which should make the rest of the production process easier,’ said Gudmundur Hannesson.