Baltic Fish

John Nurminen Foundation together with Race For The Baltic, Guldhaven Pelagiska, Rädda Lumparn, Ålands Fiskarförbund starts management fishing in Åland and Sweden to remove nutrients from the Baltic Sea. The Baltic Fish project is financed by the Baltic Sea Action Plan (BSAP) Trust Fund.

Underused domestic fish can help the Baltic Sea to recover and provide a new sustainable protein source

The Baltic Sea suffers from an excess amount of nutrients (eutrophication) which affects the delicate ecosystem of fish stocks, marine life and overall water quality. While we have been able to find solutions to decrease nutrient loading from land, we need to urgently tackle excess nutrients that have accumulated in the Baltic Sea during the past decades.

Fishing is an effective large-scale method to recycle nutrients from the Baltic Sea to land and helps improve the health of eutrophied waters. In Finland, fishing reduces annually 700 tons of phosphorus from watercourses, which is more than two times the country’s phosphorus reduction target from land-based sources under the Baltic Sea marine protection agreement.  Cyprinid fish, such as bream and roach, thrive in eutrophied waters and are found in excess in the Baltic Sea. While the cyprinid fish is both healthy and tasty, there no longer is a tradition of eating it in many Baltic Sea countries.  Besides being a very cost-efficient measure to combat eutrophication, the cyprinid fish provides a new revenue stream for local fisheries and a healthy and sustainable local protein source to end consumers. Moreover, in creating income for local fisheries, fishing cyprinids help to maintain the traditional livelihood of coastal fishing, which is an integral part of the Swedish and Finnish archipelago culture.

The new Baltic Fish -project walks in the footsteps of the Local Fishing -project

Finland has taken a head start in fishing cyprinid fish for human consumption. In 2015, the John Nurminen Foundation (JNF) launched a project to commercialize cyprinid fish from the Baltic Sea for human consumption. First commercial bream products were on the market in 2017. Following the project’s great success, Finnish and Swedish organizations including Race For The Baltic, Guldhaven Pelagiska, Rädda Lumparn, Ålands Fiskarförbund and JNF have decided to expand management fishing to Åland and Sweden. The Baltic Fish project is financed by the Baltic Sea Action Plan (BSAP) Trust Fund.

The Baltic Fish -project was lauched in a sustainable fishing seminar in Hanasaari 13.9.2019. In this picture are the project partners (from left): Teija Aho, Peter Wiwen-Nilsson, Emma Gabrielsson, Fredrik Lundberg, Marjukka Porvari, Maija Salmiovirta ja Kirsi Kurki-Miettinen.

The Baltic Fish project will work closely with local authorities to create rules for sustainable management fishing, monitor fishing practices as well as ensure all health aspects for human consumption. Moreover, the project will collaborate with commercial producers and partners to establish well-functioning production chains and commercialization of the products. The first products are expected to be available for Swedish consumers in 2020.  This project gives an excellent opportunity to launch sustainably sourced local fish products into the Swedish market and to meet increasing consumer demands for environmentally friendly seafood. By taking care of the entire production chain from fishery to finished product we have the opportunity to create exactly the kind of products that our customers are looking for.

Further information:

John Nurminen Foundation

Founded in 1992, the purpose of the John Nurminen Foundation is to save the Baltic Sea and its heritage to future generations. The Foundation has been awarded for its work as a communicator of information and producer of marine content. The goal of the Foundation’s Clean Baltic Sea projects is to improve the condition of the Baltic Sea with tangible measures that will reduce the load and environmental risks directed at the sea. Our work is steered by measurable results and impact.

Marjukka Porvari
Director of the Clean Baltic Sea projects
John Nurminen Foundation

Maija Salmiovirta
Project manager
John Nurminen Foundation

Race For The Baltic

Race For The Baltic is a non-profit foundation founded by Zennström Philanthropies. The Foundation’s mission is to improve the health of the Baltic Sea by focusing on cost effective solution-oriented projects that show the greatest potential to improve the state of the Baltic Sea.

Emma Gabrielsson
Project Manager
Race For The Baltic

Guldhaven Pelagiska AB

Guldhaven Pelagiska is a private company located in Kalix, Sweden, specialized both in fishing and fish processing from local fisheries in the Bothnian Bay.

Teija Aho
Guldhaven Pelagiska AB

Rädda Lumparn

Rädda Lumparn -yhdistyksen perustivat vuonna 2014 Lumparnin lähialueen asukkaat, jotka olivat huolissaan paikallisista vesistään, nimittäin Lumparnista ja sen lahdista. Yhdistyksen tavoitteena on parantaa Lumparnin ja sen lahtien vedenlaatua, lisätä tietämystä ja kiinnostusta paikalliseen vesiensuojelutyöhön, sekä tukea hoitokalastustoimia ja virkistysmahdollisuuksia.

Carina Aaltonen
Föreningen Rädda Lumparn

Ålands Fiskarförbund

Ålands Fiskeriförbund is an association of local fishermen at the Åland Islands.

Fredrik Lundberg
Ålands Fiskarförbund


NEFCO is an international financial institution (IFI) established in 1990 by the five Nordic countries, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden, with the aim of having a positive impact on the climate and environment in a cost-efficient way. Focusing on small and medium-sized projects with tangible results, NEFCO provides high additionality to governments, co-financiers and customers. Over the years, NEFCO has financed more than 1,000 private and public sector projects across different sectors in 80 countries, with a strong focus on Eastern Europe, the Baltic Sea, and the Arctic and Barents Regions. NEFCO’s headquarters is located in Helsinki, Finland. Read more at

Anja Nystén
Senior Manager, Fund Manager of the BSAP Fund