A factory ship is a large deep-sea fishing vessel that is specially equipped and used to already immediately to process the catch of low end consumer justice on the high seas ( disassemble / filleting and exclude, packaging, deep freeze ). Can thus be not only processed but also caught one calls this type of ship as fishing and processing ship.
Originally the term was used in whaling synonymous with the mother ship for the actual whalers. Whales are harpooned while of fishing boats, but then hoisted directly on board the mother ship because of the size. In the course of trawl fishing trawlers are used.
Factory ships are still the flagship of a fleet, but compared to the previous whaling mother ship in huge enlarged scale, as the catches are now greater and fishing trips now take much longer than in earlier times. Today's factory ships to process in a single hour more than the average fishing boat in the 16th century could catch in an entire season. From a total of about 3.5 million fishing vessels worldwide (according to Greenpeace), although only about 1% ( 38,000 ) Industrial ships, but they have 50 to 60 % of global fishing capacity.
As part does not fit the entire catch a ride on the factory ship, sometimes a supply ship used to support that takes on the return trip the already processed part of the cargo and bring to a port. Then there were the whaling fleets tankers, for the fishing fleets especially reefers used.
The factory ship of the Japanese whaling fleet, the Nisshin Maru, often seen in the show Whale Wars.
The largest ever built whaling factory ship in the world was the Dutch Willem Barendsz, completed in 1955, with 26,800 GRT, 207 feet long, two 10,500 - horsepower engines, 14 knots and a crew of 500.
The Atlantic Navigator, one of the largest factory ships in the world, is the flagship of the Faroese fishing fleet ( Næraberg shipping company P / F). The German Atlantic Peace of the Ocean Food GmbH & Co. KG, Bremerhaven, one of the last ships of the German High Seas Fisheries ( Ocean Food is since 2009 a subsidiary of the Dutch group Parlevliet & Van der Plas ), is not just a factory ship, but a catch and processing vessel.
The current (2013 ) largest pure factory ship in the world is the sailing under the Russian flag Lafayette, a converted former oil tanker.