Monday, 24 June 2013

Fish Fight

A campaign headed by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall - of River Cottage up the road near Axminster - is gaining ground. 

"How important to you is sourcing and sustainability when you buy fish?" 
Hugh's fish fight takes Tesco to task | Life and style | guardian.co.uk

Latest news from Fish Fight

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Sunday Times: The cost of luxury seafood has soared, driven by disease, low catches & growing demand (£) http://t.co/05GnhF2CxO
Guardian: Cod stocks recover after years of overfishingNEWS

Guardian: Cod stocks recover after years of overfishing

ADDED BY FF_TEAM ON 11/06/2013
Survey suggests effective management means levels are increasing – but stocks won't be sustainable for at least a year See more...
CFP agreement reached in Brussels!BLOG

CFP agreement reached in Brussels!

ADDED BY HUGH ON 30/05/2013
Now that the European Parliament and the Council of Ministers have reached a deal, the new Common Fisheries Policy is done, bar the shouting. Discards will be massively reduced across Europe... See more...

And to follow up on that last story:

For years, campaigners have been fighting against industrial fishing in European waters and last week, at long last, they had something to celebrate. Their target has been the huge factory ships that hoover up everything in their wake, discarding the dead fish they don't want – often half the catch – and returning to port with their quotas met the most profitable way. The result has not just been dwindling fish stocks – the entire marine ecosystem is under assault, including the coastal fishing communities that depend on it for their livelihood.
No one European country can make a difference by itself: fish do not respect borders. In any case, the danger for any one country acting unilaterally to husband fish stocks and ban the practice of discarding dead fish is that if others do not follow suit it will be the sucker. It will have hurt its own fishing interests just to benefit others. This is a problem that can only be solved by European countries acting together.
Last Thursday at 3am, EU members states finally agreed the outlines of a tough Common Fisheries Policy. First, there was a commitment for the first time to set quotas – based on hard scientific advice – that aim to go beyond stabilising fish stocks to achieving growth. Crucially, from 2015, boats will be forbidden from discarding unwanted dead fish, starting with species such as mackerel that live in the upper oceans, and extended to all fish types by 2020. Every country will have to submit a detailed plan for how it intends to meet its quota, but making its own decision about which types of fishing it will favour. But with discards effectively banned – inevitably, under British pressure, boats will still be allowed to discard 5% of their catch after 2020 – there will be an inbuilt bias against industrial fishing. This is a major move to help stocks.
Battle-hardened campaigners could only blink in semi-disbelief. Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, the leader of Fish Fight, who has signed up more than 860,000 supporters to work for tougher quotas and a ban on discards, hailed the deal as a "tremendous achievement". Even Greenpeace managed a grudging congratulation: "For all its loopholes and sluggish timelines the policy has the potential to turn Europe's destructive and oversized fishing industry into a sustainable, low-impact sector." The fishing industry acknowledged a corner had been turned.


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