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Marine Science



Malta project to highlight awareness of the riches of the sea. Malta has launched the EU-funded multi-media public awareness campaign ‘‘Exploring Together the Treasures of the Sea!’’.

A campaign in which the Maltese Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture joined forces with the Department of Curriculum, Research, Innovation and Lifelong Learning and the National Literacy Agency.

The goal of the campaign was to raise awareness of the state of the local fish stocks, educate the public on sustainable fish consumption, improve the long-term perceptions of the role of the fishing industry and highlight how individual choices help conservation efforts.

Yanica Grima, Senior Manager (EU Funds), Funds and Programmes Division, said:

“Through public campaigns like ‘Exploring Together the Treasures of the Sea’, we are able to improve awareness of the nutritional value of under-utilised fish species.”

The campaign primarily focused on children as the next generation of seafood consumers. The aim was to reach them and make seafood more accessible, as well as to educate them about the importance of sustainable fishing practices. The children also learned about the many health benefits of seafood and about the fishing industry.

Project beneficiaries used the European, Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF) to reach children through fun educational materials and engaging public events. The educational resources included animated cartoons and an illustrated book in both English and Maltese for primary school students.

The campaign also broadcast advertisements and educational information and organised an open weekend at the fish market in Marsa. During the weekend, visitors were able to learn more about the campaign, while various stakeholders provided information about the benefits of sustainable fishing.

There were also campaign themed mugs, seafood cooking classes, and an exhibition of children’s drawings inspired by the project. In addition, every private household in Malta and Gozo received an information leaflet.

The project helped to improve public awareness of sustainable fish consumption and the state of the local fish stocks and highlighted how individual consumption choices can make an impact. Overall, the project increased the demand for local fish by promoting local fish species that are less popular and often underused by consumers. The campaign also drove increases in the value and volume of sales among producer organisations, exceeding initial projections.

Yanica Grima added:

“With the help of EMFF funding, the ‘Exploring Together the Treasures of the Sea’ project was able to increase local fish consumption by 13%, according to a study conducted in 2019.”

EU-funded initiatives like “Exploring Together the Treasures of the Sea!” are helping to educate the public about the value of seafood. By raising awareness and shaping consumption patterns, these campaigns can leave a lasting impact on future generations.

EU funding was vital for the success of this campaign and beneficiaries plan to seek funding for similar projects in the future. While challenges remain, these campaigns show a promising path towards exploring all the treasures of the sea.