The Danish sandeel fishery for 2021 has been postponed until 15 April

The Danish sandeel fishery for 2021 has been postponed until 15 April

The Danish sandeel fleet will have to wait until 15 April this year before they can start the fishery.

Traditionally, the fishery beings on 01 April but this year it is not the case after it was announced last Friday, 26 March that the opening of the fisheries would be postponed until the middle of the month.

This notice is issued in accordance with the rules of the Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries’s Executive Order no. 2087 of 10 December 2020, § 2, cf. Appendix 6, which entered into force on 26 March 2021 and is valid until and including 30 April 2021 unless otherwise announced.

Danish sandeel fishermen had been looking forward to starting the fishing with the Danish Fisheries Association also recommending that the fishery start on 01 April but due to the ongoing situation where the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement being delayed, the Danish authorities were forced to delay the start.

“DPPO, MID and DFPO have informed the Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries that we can accept in that light that the sandeel fishery this year starts on 15 April, but only as a result of the given circumstances. It does not set a precedent – it is April 1, which is the start time for sandeel fishing, says Kenn Skau Fischer,” chairman of the Danish Fisheries Association. 

More specifically, the challenges are the negotiations between the EU and the UK. At the EU Council of Ministers’ meeting last week, the EU set a sandeel quota, but the EU and the UK have not yet agreed on fishing opportunities for 2021, and therefore the sandeel fishery in British waters has not yet been given the green light. 

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Furthermore, the EU and the UK have not finished negotiating quotas for 2021. They have set a number of temporary quotas for their joint stocks until the end of July. However, as the sandeel fishery is a seasonal fishery, an exception has been made, so the quota is set for the whole year based on the advice.

The ICES have advised that when the MSY approach is applied, catches for sandeel in divisions 4.a–b and Subdivision 20, Sandeel Area 3r (northern and central North Sea, Skagerrak), for 2021 should be no more than 161,335 tonnes

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Danish sandeel fishery 2021 postponed until the middle of April

by editor time to read: 6 min