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Thread: EU "must act" to curb Faroe and Iceland

  1. #21

    Default mackerel landing

    Ally you are probable right in what you say about the whitefish boats being affected. It was a shame seeing the Jupiter being stopped landing thier catch.
    It seems like a case of poacher turned gamekeeper after all the pelagic illegal landings in the past.

  2. #22
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    Default

    i did say `everything aside!`-iceland anyway has set it`s quota high as it will be drastically reduced when it joins the eu-your as well starting the bidding high. the faroese are at it-and why not if they get away with it?-if the irish or scottish pelagic sector thought they could pull a stroke like that they would be at it to!-it`s just as ally says in the long run it will be the small men in the industry that will undoubtedly suffer whether they are scottish,irish,icelandic or faroese-there will be repercussions for them from the fall out.

  3. #23
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    Default Mackerel protest trawler leaves Peterhead

    http://www.fishupdate.com/news/fulls...Peterhead.html

    Quote Originally Posted by fishupdate
    THE Faroese fishing boat at the centre of the mackerel row yesterday has now left Peterhead and headed back out to sea with its catch still on board.

    Protesters stopped the trawler Jupiter from landing its catch of mackerel in protest at the decision by the Faroe Islands to hand itself a unilateral mackerel quota of 85,000 tons. There is similar anger over Iceland's decision to give itself a 130,000 ton quota.


    The move has brought condemnation from the European Union and from Norway and there has been talk of a total ban on seafood (including white fish like cod and haddock) from the two countries, although as yet it has not been suggested by any governments or official authorities. The Scottish Fishermen's Federation has also strongly criticised Iceland and the Faroe Islands, warning that its action will impact on the livelihood of SFF members.


    The Peterhead incident is the second such protest over a Faroese mackerel boat in Scotland in the past few weeks. Yesterday the trawler was met by dozens of protesters who created a blockade on the quayside to stop the vessel from landing around 1,000 tons of fish. The police stood by but the protest passed off peacefully.


    The Jupiter's skipper Emil Pedersen said he was in a "very bad" situation and argued that the dispute was a political issue which should be sorted out by politicians.


    So far neither the Icelandic or Faroese governments have shown any signs of backing down and their respective fishing vessel owner organisations have defended the quotas saying they were both legally and morally right because the two countries had been sidelined in international negotiations.

  4. #24
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    Default Scotland and Norway “united” on mackerel issue

    http://www.fishnewseu.com/latest-new...rel-issue.html

    Quote Originally Posted by fishnewseu
    Wednesday, 18 August 2010 10:24

    SCOTLAND’S First Minister said today he had joined forces with the Norwegian Government in a bid to end an escalating mackerel row which, he said, is threatening to punish the responsible actions of the Norwegian and Scottish fleets.

    Speaking in the wake of the failed attempt by the Faroese pelagic catcher Jupiter to land mackerel at Peterhead, Mr Salmond said he met Norway's Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre today to discuss a range of issues, including the "irresponsible" decision by Iceland and the Faroe to unilaterally award “excessive” fishing quota for mackerel to themselves .

    Faroe recently set a quota for mackerel of 85,000 tonnes for this year - 15 per cent of the recommended global total allowable catch and far in excess of their previous four per cent share. This follows a recent decision by Iceland to declare themselves a quota of 130,000 tonnes.

    And a statement issued by Mr Salmond today underlined Scotland’s fears that the unilateral action is not only likely to devastate the sustainability of the stock but will also seriously undermine Scotland's credentials as having the first large-scale mackerel fishery in Europe to be accredited by the Marine Stewardship Council.

    Scotland's Fisheries Secretary Richard Lochhead has already written twice to the European Commissioner calling for a tough response.

    Mr Salmond added today:

    "Scotland and Norway share many fisheries interests, a number of North Sea stocks are jointly managed and shared through the annual EU/Norway fisheries bi-laterals. And we are in complete agreement that the governments of the Faroe Islands and Iceland have acted irresponsibly and are threatening global mackerel stocks by awarding such excessive quotas.

    "The EU and Norway are strongly aligned on this issue having committed to a ten-year deal on mackerel management and shares in January 2010. This partnership will be absolutely vital in tackling Iceland and the Faroes in an effective manner that sends out a strong message to others that while responsible and innovative fisheries practices will be rewarded, those who don't take conservation seriously will be dealt with in an appropriate manner.

    "Because of the considerable sacrifices made by Scotland's fishermen and other EU member states on the conservation front, including Norway, mackerel is now one of the most sustainable fisheries. However Iceland and the Faroes are running the very real risk of making a mockery of our efforts and must be called to task. This is of great concern to both the Scottish and Norwegian industry and authorities.

    "The dispute could have huge consequences for the Scottish fishing industry if it results in damage to the stock or a substantial reduction in shares. Landings of mackerel by Scottish vessels in 2009 were worth an estimated £135 million, almost a third of the total value of all fish and shellfish landings by the whole Scottish fishing fleet in 2009. The Scottish Government have already joined forces with the UK Government to voice its concern and have also made an official objection to the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certification of Faroese mackerel. Norway has also taken decisive action and is to be applauded for doing so.

    "We are pleased that the European Commissioner, Mrs Damanaki, has taken the unusual step of publicly denouncing these damaging actions and that she has written to the Enlargement Commissioner (Mr Fule) requesting that the issue be kept at the forefront of the Icelandic EU accession negotiations. I would urge the EU and Norway to keep up the pressure, and hope that a new round of negotiations will begin shortly where we will aim to pursue a fairer outcome for all parties. But we will not accept a deal at any price and we will not allow the anarchic actions of Iceland and Faroes to hold all the rest of us to ransom."


    The bid to land mackerel at Peterhead this week by the Faroese vessel Jupiter ended in failure after a major quayside protest was mounted by the Scottish fishing industry.

    To Scottish industry observers, the landing attempt underlined that while Faroe wants more of a mackerel catch for itself, it also wants and arguably needs, to maintain regular landings into Scotland, despite the mounting fury among Scottish skippers over the country’s actions on the key stock which is effectively the life blood of the Scottish pelagic sector.

    *Scottish Liberal Democrat fisheries spokesman Liam McArthur said today that Mr Salmond often trumpets the excellent relationships he has with Nordic countries and Scottish pelagic skippers will want to know exactly what steps he and his fisheries minister were taking to resolve the issue.

  5. #25
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    Default Faroes sends protest letter to Salmond in mackerel row

    http://www.fishupdate.com/news/fulls...kerel_row.html

    Quote Originally Posted by fishupdate
    THE Faroese have sent a strong letter of protest to the Scottish Government over the blockade of the mackerel trawler Jupiter in Peterhead harbour last week.

    The country's Foreign Minister Jørgen Niclasen has written to Scotland’s First Minister, Alex Salmond, demanding that he "takes all appropriate steps" to avoid future blockade attempts. The letter was sent as the war of words in the dispute started to hot up.

    The Minister said that the vessel’s owners had an agreement with a company in Peterhead for the purchase and delivery of their catch, which amounted to some 1,150 tonnes of fresh mackerel. A private protest action on the quayside and the apparent failure of the relevant local authorities to resolve the matter led to the vessel being unable to land the catch.

    He added that the delays caused by this incident mean that the catch which was intended for human consumption can now only be used for fish meal production and will be landed in the Faroes instead.

    In his letter, Mr Niclasen reminded Mr Salmond of the excellent relations that the Faroes and Scotland have long enjoyed as nearest neighbours, with active and mutually beneficial cooperation in many areas, in particular in fisheries and trade in fisheries products. The Faroese Government therefore expects that Scottish authorities will not tolerate nor condone any further obstructive actions such as those seen yesterday in Peterhead.

    Finally, Mr Niclasen underlined in his letter to the Scottish First Minister that any difference of views there may be in relation to the respective catches of mackerel nations in the region can only be resolved through a shared commitment by the Faroes, EU, Norway and Iceland to ensuring sustainable fisheries management through international agreements reached at the negotiating table.

    But not every fishing firm agrees with the blockade. The action was criticised at the weekend by the Torry based seafood firm J Charles which said UK supermarkets would be up to 70 per cent devoid of fish without supplies from Iceland or the Faroes.

  6. #26
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    Default Split emerges between fishermen and processors in mackerel war

    http://www.pressandjournal.co.uk/Article.aspx/1881864

    Quote Originally Posted by Press and Journal
    Scotland relies on Faroese and icelandic imports, says seafood boss

    By Keith Findlay

    Published: 21/08/2010

    DISAPPOINTED: Andrew Charles, who says fishermen should be targeting failed European policy. Colin Rennie
    More Pictures

    Signs of a major rift between north-east fishermen and processors have emerged.

    Last night, an Aberdeen businessman lambasted the Scottish response to an escalating row over Icelandic and Faroese mackerel quotas.

    Andrew Charles, who runs Torry-based seafood firm J. Charles, said he was disappointed by the actions of protesting fishermen who stopped a Faroese vessel off-loading her catch at Peterhead earlier this week.

    He said the Scottish Government and fishing industry should be targeting their wrath at failed European Union fishing policy and not at the Faroe Islands.

    Mr Charles said Faroe ought to be lauded for its record on fisheries management, and claimed Scottish supermarket shelves would be 60-70% devoid of fish if there were no imports of Icelandic and Faroese fish.

    Recent protests – from both fishermen and Holyrood – were an “ill-judged” attack on the countries, he said, adding: “The Faroese know a lot more about fish stocks than the often subjective scientists whose data is used by the European Commission.”

    According to Mr Charles, the owners of the Faroese boat forced to leave Peterhead with her holds full of mackerel on Tuesday should get compensation.

    Iceland and Faroe claim there is more fish in the sea than scientists suggest and have complained their original quotas took no account of fish movements due to climate change.

    Iceland’s fisheries ministry yesterday revealed new data showing a large increase in mackerel in its waters.

    But the uproar gathered pace as Scottish Tory MEP Struan Stevenson called for an immediate EU-wide blockade of Icelandic and Faroese ships and goods.

    He also wants Faroese fisheries ministers to be summoned to Brussels for talks.

    Mr Stevenson said: “Iceland and the Faroes are acting just like their Viking ancestors, only this time it’s our mackerel they're plundering.

    “So far they have obstinately refused to bring their quotas down to sensible levels, so I believe the EU must apply maximum pressure to bring them back to the table.”

    Other processors were reluctant to comment but Shetland Catch managing director Simon Leiper said he fully supported the protest at Peterhead this week.

    Peterhead-based Caley Fisheries has processing and catching interests and Stephen Jon Buchan, its operations manager, said he recognised merit in both sides of the fishing dispute.

    Seafood industry body Seafood Scotland said it stood fully behind moves by the Scottish, UK, EU and Norwegian governments to resolve the matter quickly.

    Catch sector leaders fear the actions of Iceland and Faroe will threaten the viability of Scotland’s pelagic (mainly mackerel and herring) fleet.

    Scottish Pelagic Fishermen’s Association chief executive Ian Gatt said it was vital the countries respect longstanding international agreements.

    Scottish Fishermen’s Federation chief executive Bertie Armstrong said: “The actions of Iceland and Faroes amount to an abandonment of rational fisheries management. This cannot be tolerated by the other states with an interest in continued sustainable catching of mackerel.”

    A Scottish Government spokesman said: “The sooner everyone can come to the negotiating table, the better.”

    Read more: http://www.pressandjournal.co.uk/Art...#ixzz0xSgNqzBx

  7. #27
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    Iceland insists its fishermen are permitted to catch any fish it wants within its 200-mile territorial limit.
    Is it the case now that Iceland is on its backside with all the carry on with its banks, it seams to be a country that could not give a toss as to what affects other country's or people. All it wants to do is look after them self's,
    may Scotland should take a leaf out of Iceland's book. and look after our own
    Robert Ritchie ::

  8. #28
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    Default Why is Britain braced for a mackerel war?

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-11062674

    Quote Originally Posted by BBC
    Britain is said to be bracing itself for a re-run of its Cod Wars with Iceland - except this time the fish being fought over is mackerel. Yet, until recently, few were interested in a fish regarded as unclean.

    As far as fishing is concerned, relations between the UK and Iceland have been as turbulent as the waters of the North Atlantic where their disputes have been played out.

    So it is perhaps no surprise to see a British MEP, Conservative Struan Stevenson, calling for an EU-wide blockade of Icelandic boats - along with those from the Faroe Islands - in a row over quotas.

    However, while rows in the past have been over the coveted and dwindling stocks of cod, this time the nations are clashing over mackerel.
    Map of mackerel distribution

    Iceland, which landed practically no mackerel before 2006, has allocated itself a 130,000-tonne quota. The Faroes, a collection of islands 250 miles north of Scotland, has tripled its usual entitlement.

    The conflict led to a tense stand off at the port of Peterhead last week, when Scottish fishermen blockaded a Faroese trawler - preventing it from landing its £400,000 catch.
    Continue reading the main story
    “Start Quote

    There was folklore suggesting mackerel fed on the corpses of dead sailors”

    End Quote Dr Robert Prescott Scottish Fisheries Museum Trust

    Coupled with an EU warning to take "all necessary measures" to protect its fishing interests, it led to comparisons with the last "Cod War" of the 1970s which saw Icelandic gunboats clash with a Royal Navy frigate.

    But a war over mackerel in those days would have been inconceivable - a fact that reveals how the oily fish's image has changed.

    As recently as the mid-1970s, mackerel had an image problem.

    A 1976 survey of "housewives" in Britain by the White Fish Authority demonstrated a reluctance to depart from cod, haddock or salmon. Less than 10% of its 1,931 respondents had ever bought mackerel and only 3% did so regularly. Many fishmongers did not display or even stock it.

    "Many housewives had heard that mackerel was a scavenger or that it had a 'bad reputation'," the authority noted.

    Mackerel's image problem goes back further, says Dr Robert Prescott, vice-president of the Scottish Fisheries Museum Trust.

    "There was folklore suggesting mackerel fed on the corpses of dead sailors. It takes a long time to convince the great British public to change."

    It only began being landed in great numbers during the late 19th Century and even then was regarded as "unclean". By the mid-20th Century British-caught mackerel was being processed on Eastern European factory ships and sold for export.
    Continue reading the main story
    Mackerel Facts
    Mackerel

    * A pelagic fish - meaning it inhabits the upper layers of the open sea
    * Streamlined bodies allow speeds of 100 metres in 11secs (20.336 mph)
    * May live for more than 20 years
    * Found off all British coasts, in the Mediterranean, and American side of the north Atlantic
    * Recent movement to Icelandic waters may be due to climate change
    * An excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids, selenium, and vitamin B12
    * Eaten in the UK for hundreds of years, Samuel Pepys breakfasted on mackerel on 30 May 1660

    But, Dr Prescott notes, the fish has always been popular among part-time fishermen - largely because "they can't resist any kind of lure" and mackerel is an easy catch.

    These days shoppers are perhaps most familiar with the fish as a smoked and vacuum-packed fillet.

    Food journalist Nigel Barden says it has become more fashionable, particularly among eco-conscious consumers.

    "The health factor is also a huge element. It's an oily fish, rich in omega-3, which is very good for us," says Barden. "They are very versatile. You can bake them, use them as a base for a fish pie, even use them as sushi and sashimi.

    "There's nothing better than a fresh, grilled mackerel and we're lucky to have some of the best in the world off our coast."

    Whether that remains the case in future decades could depend on the outcome of the current international spat.

    Mackerel stocks in the North Atlantic have been carefully managed in recent years, making it something of a rarity in marine stewardship circles - a good news story.

    No-one wants a repeat of the collapse in North Sea stocks which saw the volume of catches drop by 90% over a decade, from highs of one million tonnes a year in the 1960s.
    Most valuable

    The International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (Ices), on whose advice the European quotas are based, classifies stocks as at "full reproductive capacity". However, its latest report warns stocks have been significantly overfished since 2007 and the absence of effective international agreements prevents "control of the exploitation rate".

    In the last two years, catches in Icelandic waters amounted to 18% of the total haul in the North-East Atlantic - none of which was taken into account before European quotas were agreed.
    Smoked mackerel Smoked mackerel has become increasingly popular

    "You can't just add 200,000 tonnes to the quota without expecting some ramifications," says the Mareine Stewardship Council's James Simpson. "If the overfishing continues, stock will start to fall below sustainable levels in 2012."

    Should that happen, the fish would lose its sustainability certification, knocking consumer confidence and damaging the reputations of fisheries across Europe.

    The potential loss to Scotland, where most of the UK's mackerel is caught, is clear. Last year it brought £135m into the economy, making it the Scottish fleet's most valuable fish.

    Unsurprisingly Ian Gatt, of the Scottish Pelagic Fishermen's Association, is concerned.

    "The mackerel stock has been sustainably managed for many years ensuring that all those involved in the fishery have benefited," he says. "The actions of Iceland and the Faroe Islands could undo all the good work in a matter of months."
    'Godsend'

    But Iceland and the Faroes see it differently. Both say Europe is stubbornly protecting quotas by refusing meaningful negotiation and, since the fish has gravitated north in recent years, Iceland says it is merely fishing within its own zones.

    The Icelandics have little taste for mackerel and for years, says Sigurdur Sverrisson, of the Federation of Icelandic Fishing Vessel Owners, it was "not so much sought after".

    But a recent fall in the the island's herring catch means it has been "like a Godsend to us".

    Seafish, a UK state and industry-funded body which promotes sustainability across all stages of seafood production, acknowledges that something needs to change.

    Concerns persist about illegal fishing and discarding of dead undersized fish.

    But it says including Iceland in future agreements would bring the overall catch back into manageable levels.

    Whether there is political will elsewhere in Europe to agree the quota cuts necessary to allow this to happen, will become clear in the coming months.

  9. #29
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    Default Iceland claims "huge" mackerel migration into its waters

    http://www.fishnewseu.com/latest-new...ts-waters.html

    Quote Originally Posted by fishnewseu
    Wednesday, 25 August 2010 10:38

    ICELANDIC research indicates that mackerel is moving into Icelandic waters in "huge numbers," according to the country's IceNews website.

    Reacting to the call by Scots MEP and deputy chairman of the European Parliament's fisheries committee Struan Stevenson, for tough action against both Iceland and Faroe for taking unilateral action on mackerel quotas, the website staunchly defends Iceland's conservation record.

    Stevenson wants the fisheries ministers of Iceland and Faroe to be called urgently to Brussels in order to negotiate a solution to the escalating mackerel fishing dispute.

    And Stevenson, a Conservative MEP, believes that the EU should use the threat of sanctions against Iceland and the Faroes due to their large unilaterally declared mackerel fishing quotas.

    Stevenson and the Scottish fishing industry have contended that both countries' action is putting the livelihoods of Scottish fishermen at risk.

    The Icelandic website acknowledges that a decade ago Iceland fished "two tonnes a year" of mackerel and this year set a 130,000 tonne quota for themselves.

    But the website adds that Icelandic Marine Research Institute surveys suggest that mackerel are migrating to Icelandic waters in "huge numbers" and that the unilateral quota is sustainable.

    "Iceland has a reputation for taking good care of its fish stocks but the EU does not believe that is currently the case with mackerel," the website adds.

  10. #30
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    Default Lochhead wins EU “reassurances” over mackerel issue

    http://www.fishnewseu.com/latest-new...rel-issue.html

    Quote Originally Posted by fishnewseu
    Tuesday, 24 August 2010 13:21

    THE escalating row over mackerel quotas went a stage further today when Scottish Fisheries Minister Richard Lochhead said he has received “reassurances” that the EU are fully committed to resolving the issue of increased quotas by Faroe and Iceland.

    He said that as far as the EU were concerned, ” no options” were off the table

    Mr Lochhead said he has spoken with European Fisheries Commissioner Maria Damanaki, who, he said, pledged that the EU would work closely with Scotland and the UK to decide on the measures that could be taken over the “arbitrary” quota setting.

    At the end of July the Faroes set a quota for mackerel of 85,000 tonnes for this year, more than three times their previous total allowable catch (TAC), which follows a recent decision by Iceland to declare themselves a quota of 130,000 tonnes a move which, it is claimed, could destabilise global mackerel stocks.

    Mr Lochhead added:

    “Scotland has the first large-scale mackerel fishery in Europe to be accredited by the Marine Stewardship Council – efforts that could be undermined by the short-sighted actions of the Faroes and Iceland.

    “It is clear that action to address this situation needs to come from the EU, which is why I welcome the strong stance from Commissioner Damanaki, who has confirmed to me that no options are off the table to achieve a resolution and that Scotland and the UK will be closely involved in the process. Ms Damanaki also confirmed that she would see that a meeting is organised with representatives of both the Faroese and Icelandic governments in early September.

    “This issue transcends diplomatic relationships or regional rivalries because the very future and sustainability of global mackerel stocks is at stake. That is why I believe the sooner everyone can come to the negotiating table the better.”

    Mr Lochhead spoke with Commissioner Damanaki on Monday, which follows on from Mr Lochhead and Richard Benyon, UK Fisheries Minister, both writing to the Commissioner earlier this month to raise their concerns.
    In 2009 the value to the Scottish economy of mackerel was £135 million – the fleet’s most valuable stock.

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