Fishing crisis escalates in Killybegs as another vessel is turned away
A fishing boat carrying 950 tonnes of fish was turned away from Killybeg harbor yesterday. Last week a Danish vessel failed to land around 1,300 tonnes of blue whiting due to what are described as landing rules set by the SFPA which insists the fish be weighed without water.
Irish Fishers Processors and Exporters Association (IFPEA) CEO Brendan Byrne said: “Ireland is a full member of the European Union and as such we follow the same rules and regulations as all other Member States, had the Norwegian vessel ‘Ingrid Majala’ attempted to land in France, Belgium, Spain or any other EU coastal state, they would have been permitted to do so and, furthermore, l integrity and quality of their fish catch would be preserved and the catch would enter the food chain.”
Mr Byrne who was present at the quay yesterday said this was not the case in Ireland and similar to the Danish ship ‘the Ruth’ last week, Blue Whiting which was aimed at markets with long-established customers in West Africa, Ukraine and other countries. , was presented with no other alternative than the processing of catches for non-human purposes, such as animal feed or other products.
“This is the crux of the problem that fish processors face in Killybegs every time a monitored landing is requested for blue whiting catches; are they placing perfectly good food for human consumption in the animal feed chain because currently, under the rules which I believe are being overly interpreted by the competent authority, there is no other option presented to them upon landing,” he said.
He added that yesterday the human cost of this weigh-in debacle became apparent as 54 workers were sent home. Last week, a total of 112 workers were sent home. In the past two weeks, 166 workers have been sent home. Opportunities to attract other ships to the port may also have been lost: “These lost opportunities would indeed create more employment opportunities for seasonal port staff and provide them with much needed income,” he said. -he declares.
Refusal to allow landing of fish from Norwegian vessel gives Ireland a bad image – IFPEA
– Workers sent home for second time in 5 days as weigh-in debacle gets far-fetched -https://t.co/MiQqX0t7dU pic.twitter.com/sKcREewlic
—Mark McCarthy (@MarineTimesNews)
April 6, 2022
The Killybegs-based representative said at a critical time when inflation is affecting household incomes, denying these workers the chance to earn an income is a “national disgrace”.
“These seasonal workers work hard for their money, and due to the seasonal nature of the fishery and reduced quota opportunities, every day they can get work is essential to them. This is completely lost on those who apply and apply these rules, we add. , which are not found in any other EU Member State. Weighing blue whiting in bulk without the water is not possible and cannot be done without destroying the product”, a- he declared.
Failure to allow landing of fish from Norwegian vessel gives Ireland a bad image – IFPEA https://t.co/fu0yEEz2Bn #irishfishingnews #irishfishingindustry #commercial fishing #fishingnews #dailyfishingnews #peach #fishing #fish #bluewhite #killybegs #sfpa #IFPEA
– The Daily Fishing (@FD_Editor)
April 6, 2022
Mr Byrne said there are alternatives: “The Irish High Court, under a ruling by Mr Justice G. Simmons, required the SFPA to approve the dockside weighing system, had the SFPA chosen to use this weighing system, which the SFPA has both approved and used over the past year and correctly weighed over 14,000 tonnes of fish – then this problem would never have arisen. reserve that judgement.
He called for alternative solutions to be found and implemented without delay: “The Irish fishing industry has absolutely no difficulty in controlling or monitoring landings, but it is essential that the rules apply equally and fair across the EU and that is simply not the case at present It is in the interest of the Irish fishing industry that there is a strong control regime – we support that, but that needs to be done with regard to the quality of fish landings, the right of fish processors to land fish for human consumption without destroying it, as is the case in all other EU coastal states… …
“Equality is not just for other members of the Common Fisheries Policy – it is also for us Irish people,” he said.