The Board of the Shetland Shellfish Management Organisation (SSMO) has hailed the successful MSC re-accreditation of the local scallop dredge and brown crab fisheries by the international sustainability watchdog.

This confirms that Shetland has the only blue label Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified king scallop and brown crab fisheries in the world.

SSMO also recently received a promise of funding support from oil firm Total E&P, which operates the Shetland Gas Plant, to assist with MSC audits over the next four years and the next re-accreditation process.

‘We’re delighted to have received the validation of our sustainable fisheries from the MSC, reflecting the enormous effort put in by local fishermen, scientists and others working in this sector,’ said board chair Ian Walterson, who was re-elected at the recent annual general meeting along with Leslie Tait as vice-chair.

‘We’d like to thank Total for the ongoing support that will help with the expense incurred for the monitoring audits that are required for our produce to continue to carry the blue label mark of sustainability.’

Ian Walterson and Lindsay Laurenson represent the Association of Shetland Community Councils on the board, while Robert Williamson and Stephen Cameron represent the shellfish processors.

Leslie Tait and Garry Leask represent Shetland Fishermen’s Association. The board’s four licensed members are Alan Pottinger, Sean Williamson, George Andrew Williamson and Sydney Johnson.

Source: Shetland Fishermen