Shetland Fisheries Statistics 2021 shows that Shetland-based fishing boats accounted for 26% of total landings for Scottish fishing boats during 2021
A new report shows Shetland-based fishing boats accounted for just over one-quarter of all the fish and shellfish landed by Scottish fishing boats in 2021, and 17% (by weight)
of all the landings by UK boats
49,000 tonnes of fish and shellfish worth £70 million were landed in Shetland in 2021 according to the report by Dr Ian Napier of UHI Shetland.
The “Shetland Fisheries Statistics 2021” shows that is about 10% less than in 2020 by weight although only 3% less in value. The fall in landings was due to decreases in the quantities of both pelagic fish and whitefish landed in Shetland in 2021, the latter in turn almost entirely due to a substantial fall in the quantity of whitefish landed by foreign fishing boats.
Shetland-based fishing boats landed 112,000 tonnes of fish and shellfish worth £110 million (everywhere) in 2021, a substantial increase from 2020 (20% more by weight, 5% by value). This increase was mostly in landings of pelagic fish (especially blue whiting), but landings of whitefish were also up, especially in value (by 8%). More fish and shellfish were landed in Shetland in 2021 than in any other port in the UK except Peterhead and more finfish was landed in Shetland than in all of England and Wales.
The Report says that overall, there does not appear to have been any significant impact on fish landings in Shetland from the COVID-19 pandemic, except perhaps on the prices of shellfish, which is being put down to the closure of restaurants and the end of eating out during lockdown.
Shetland-based fishing boats accounted for half of all the fish and shellfish landed in Shetland in 2020 (50% by weight) and well over half by value (59%).
The total weight of fish and shellfish landed in Shetland, and by Shetland boats elsewhere, (‘Shetland’ fish landings) was just over 136,000 tonnes in 2021, 10% more than in 2020, while the total value was almost unchanged at £139 million.
On the composition of landings it was found that pelagic species such as mackerel and herring accounted for almost two-thirds of the fish and shellfish landed in Shetland in 2021, although only two-fifths of the value. Whitefish such as cod, haddock, monks and flatfish accounted for about one-third of the weight landed but just over half of the value, reflecting their greater unit value (price). Shellfish such as crabs, lobsters and scallops accounted for only a small proportion of the total landings.
For places where landings took place, lmost all the fish and shellfish landed in Shetland in 2021 was landed in either Lerwick, Scalloway or Cullivoe (Table 2). Landings at other ports were predominantly of shellfish.
In a national context, just over one-fifth of all the finfish landed in Scotland in 2021 (20% by weight) and almost one quarter by value (22%) were landed in Shetland. And one-sixth of all the finfish landed in the UK (16% by weight, 17% by value) was landed in Shetland.
More fish and shellfish were landed in Shetland – and in Lerwick – in 2021 than in any other port in the UK, except Peterhead.
Overall, Scalloway ranked 14 th in the UK for the value of fish and shellfish landed, and Cullivoe 19th . The weight of finfish landed in Shetland in 2021 (46,000 tonnes) was almost as much as the total landed in all of England, Wales and Northern Ireland (48,000 tonnes) and was substantially greater than that landed in all of England and Wales (29,000 tonnes).
Shetland-based fishing boats accounted for just over one-quarter (26% by weight) of all the fish and shellfish landed by Scottish fishing boats in 2021, and 17% (by weight) of all the landings by UK boats.