DEFRA have launched an open consultation on the latent capacity in the over 10m scallop and shellfish fleet
DEFRA have launched an open consultation on the latent capacity in the over 10 metre scallop and shellfish fleet.
In their statement DEFRA writes:
“We are now an independent coastal State. We are committed to developing a world-class fisheries management system. It will embrace sustainable fishing and support a diverse, profitable and sustainable fleet which serves the needs of coastal communities and the UK economy.
One of our priorities in this ambitious agenda is to improve how we manage non-quota stocks such as shellfish, whelks, cuttlefish etc. We want these profitable but data-poor stocks to be healthy and abundant and managed sustainably, enriching the diversity of our marine environment and coastal communites. To achieve that aim, we in Defra are working with the Scallop Industry Consultation Group, the Shellfish Industry Advisory Group and its species-specific sub-groups, to develop a future management programme for non-quota species.
The scallop and shellfish industry/government management groups have identified two areas of work that require further consideration, namely the management of the under 15m scallop fleet and latent capacity (unused licences and entitlements) within the over 10m scallop and shellfish fleet. Two separate calls for evidence are being launched in parallel. They aim to identify the level of risk and impacts associated with the unrestricted fishing of the under 15m scallop fleet and existing latent capacity and consider whether action is needed in these areas.
In this call for evidence, we are asking for views which will help us to better understand whether latent capacity is an issue of concern for the over 10m scallop and shellfish fleet in England, and, if so, how this could be alleviated. We will use the evidence gathered to inform us whether latent capacity is an issue and if so, what form of response we might consider, to ensure the sustainability of scallop and shellfish fisheries.
Why we are consulting?
We would like to have views from the industry and other relevant parties on the issue of latent capacity in the over 10m scallop and shellfish fleet in England.”
Open Consultation closes on 30 Auguest 2021. See link for survey here.