Today I attended a briefing by the National Federation of Fisherman’s Organisations (NFFO) who wanted to highlight their concerns as we head towards leaving Europe.
The UK’s seafood sector employs around 33,000 people including around 12,000 fishers and contributes 1.5 billion to the UK economy. Here in Fleetwood the fish processing industry employs around 600 people.
The NFFO are looking to the Government to secure a fairer deal on quota shares through annual fisheries agreements, controlling access by non-UK vessels to fish in UK waters and to deliver a responsive, effective, sustainable and prosperous fisheries management regime. The Fisheries Bill however has confirmed their worse fears – that their future will be part of the EU/UK trade talks. Ministers have made big promises to the fishing industry – I hope they keep those promises.