EUfishmeal, the association of European fishmeal and fish oil producers, sent a public warning to representatives of European coastal states to establish binding fisheries management strategies and sustainable quota shares for the shared stocks in the Northeast Atlantic.
In the letter, EUfishmeal said that all its members aim to have a production based on a sustainable exploitation of resources and seek to meet the international standards and certifications applied to raw materials, production and traceability. As a direct result of the lack of agreement on long-term management strategies and quota shares, several of the North East Atlantic stocks are now in immediate risk of losing their MSC and IFFO RS certifications. This will have major implications not only for the fishing industry but also for the processing industry and the economic value of the fish resources, the letter states. The association also said that the warning was echoed by feed and food conglomerates, serving to illustrate the importance of sustainability and that, in the end, it is driven by consumer demands.
EUfishmeal represents producers from the EU, as well as non-EU countries, and includes members from Denmark, Faroe Islands, France, Germany, Iceland, Ireland, Norway, Spain and the United Kingdom. The European fishmeal and fish oil industry sources more than 3,000,000 tons of raw material yearly in the form of fish landed directly to the factories, and trimmings and rest raw material from the processing industry. A very large part of these fish, either directly or indirectly supplied, are caught in the North East Atlantic.