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Aquaculture Sector and Particularly Shellfish Needs Urgent Support Decision

IFA Aquaculture has sent proposals to the Department of the Marine about supports which the sector is seeking. These follow meetings the IFA has held with the Department. A response to the proposals is awaited.

Support is particularly needed by the shellfish and processing sector, according to the IFA’s Aquaculture Executive, Teresa Morrissey. The finfish sector is “operating pretty well, considering all the constraints around the sector,” she told the MARINE TIMES. The shellfish sector is, however, in a more immediate situation, with a lot of overstocking due to problems caused in the markets by the Covid 19 Pandemic. Even before it became a major issue here, it had already caused severe restrictions on exports to markets in China and Hong Kong. This extra stock in storage added to problems at an approaching time when seed has to be taken in and sites have to be prepared for the next stock coming in.

“We are looking for supports or an incentive to release that pressure and particularly for the shellfish, oysters, mussels sectors,” Ms. Morrissey said, pointing out that changes had been made in EMFF arrangements to allow for assistance. While appreciating national measures which had been offered. “We do not have time on our side to wait much longer for what scheme or incentive is being offered, there is still some way to go on this. We have had constructive discussions with the Department up to now, but we need to have definite decisions on what we have put forward.”

• Listen to Teresa Morrissey on the Podcast.