The Scottish Fishermen’s Federation has reinforced Richard Lochhead’s call for meaningful action on discarding and not simplistic bans.
Speaking before the European Council of Fisheries Ministers on today, Monday March 19 and Tuesday, SFF Chief Executive Bertie Armstrong said: “The problem we now have is that the public campaigns to highlight the discarding of fish, for example the “Big Fish Fight” have, by using simple messages to correctly draw attention to it, left the impression that the solution is simple too – just ban it.
“Scots Fisheries Secretary Richard Lochhead has laid out the main message – that a graduated, area based approach is the only one with a chance of success. I am sure that this message will be supported by other European Fisheries ministers – and it really must not be interpreted by anyone as a softening of industry/government commitment to tackling discards. We need solutions that will actually work – a combination of selective fishing gear and radically altered regulation, designed and developed together by industry and fisheries managers. That will produce solutions that will avoid perverse outcomes reminiscent of the ‘butter mountains’ and ‘wine lakes’ of yesteryear."
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