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A Dire Situation Couldn’t Get Any Worse? It Has

The NIFA / NIFO regard the December Fisheries Council as another disaster for the inshore sector

In a statement to the Marine Times, The National Inshore Fishing Association and Organsation say that; “With regard to the outcome of the recent December Council. It would have been difficult to envisage the dire situation facing inshore fishermen currently could worsen but it did so culminating in the almost complete loss of yet another fishery so important to our economic viability, POLLACK.

*Area vi 13t down 26%* (BY CATCH ONLY)
*Area vii 56t down 87%*(BY CATCH ONLY)

Photo: Catherine Turner

“Along with a decrease in other whitefish species the outcome will be of boats tied to piers long term.

“Although an increase in the national mackerel quota will be welcomed by the fifty large vessels in the fleet the one thousand, five hundred inshore vessels gain absolutely nothing due to our unfair, discriminatory National policy under which no more than a paltry 400t is ever allocated to the numerically superior, family-owned inshore sector of the fleet.

“Shellfish market prices have been on a fast paced downward spiral for months resulting in the complete collapse of the Brown crab market in Co. Donegal and elsewhere. The spurdog fishery is stagnant because of the maximum legal size being under market requirements.

“All of this on the back of several years of hardship due to the Covid Pandemic, Brexit, Ukraine war and unprecedented rise in the cost of living has pushed the inshore sector to breaking point.”

Concluding the NIFA / NIFO say that; “It is now time for the minister and DAFM officials to Inject some Morality into the equation and provide us with Immediate Financial Aid and fairer access to National pelagic quotas before a way of life is lost to Rural Coastal Communities.”