EEZ-Report-2020-07

Fish Landings from the UK EEZ: 2015 - 2018 content

Fish Landings from the UK EEZ: 2015 - 2018

An analysis has been carried out of data published by the European Commission and the UK Marine Management Organisation, supplemented by additional data from other sources, to obtain estimates of the quantities of fish and shellfish landed from the UK EEZ and by UK boats from elsewhere in the EU EEZ.

This complements previous reports on landings by EU fishing boats from the UK EEZ and by UK boats from other areas of the EU EEZ.

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Fishing Landings from the UK EEZ 2015 - 2018

1st July 2020

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Summary

It is estimated that almost 2 million tonnes of fish and shellfish, worth £1.7 billion, were landed from the UK EEZ in 2018. More than two-thirds of that total (or more than half by value) was landed by non-UK boats.

  • UK boats’ share of the landings from the UK EEZ declined by 16% from 2015 to 2018. EU27 boats’ share also fell over this period, but by only 3%, while the share taken by all non-UK boats increased by 8%.
  • Just over 250,000 tonnes of demersal fish (cod, haddock, monks, plaice, etc.), worth more than £500 million, were landed from the UK EEZ in 2018. About half of that total (by weight or value) was landed by non-UK boats.
  • Almost 1.4 million tonnes of pelagic fish (mackerel, herring, etc.), worth about £760 million, were landed from the UK EEZ in 2018. More than three-quarters of that total (or two-thirds by value) were landed by non-UK boats.
  • Just over 150,000 tonnes of shellfish (crabs, scallops, etc.), worth almost £390 million, were landed from the UK EEZ in 2018. Most of that total (>80%) was landed by UK boats.
  • About 180,000 tonnes of industrial fish (sandeels, pout, etc.), worth about £38 million, were landed from the UK EEZ in 2018. Almost all of that (98%) was landed by non-UK boats.

The total quantity of fish and shellfish landed from the UK EEZ by UK fishing boats increased by about 17% over the eight years from 2011 to 2018 while landings by EU27 boats increased by over 60% over the same period. UK boats’ landings of pelagic fish from the UK EEZ increased by about 40% from 2011 to 2018 while landings by EU27 boats increased by two-and-a-half times (159%).

UK fishing boats landed a total of about 700,000 tonnes of fish and shellfish, worth about £1 billion, in 2018. Most of that total (80%) was caught in the UK EEZ; 15% (9% by value) was landed from elsewhere in the EU EEZ.

  • Pelagic fish accounted for just over half of the landings by UK boats in 2018, demersal fish about one-quarter and shellfish slightly less. By value the landings were roughly equally split between the three species groups.
  • Pelagic fish accounted for almost three-quarters of UK boats’ landings from elsewhere in the EU27 EEZ, with the balance roughly equally split between demersal fish and shellfish. By value, demersal fish accounted for almost half of UK boats’ landings from the EU27 EEZ, and shellfish for about one-third.
  • Most of UK boats’ landings from the EU27 EEZ were from the EEZ of Ireland, followed by that of France , although some individual demersal species were caught mainly in the EEZs of Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands. Some individual pelagic species as well as a large proportion of the shellfish were caught mainly in the EEZ of France.

Overall, EU27 fishing boats landed more than eight times more fish and shellfish from the UK EEZ in 2018 (860,000 tonnes) than UK boats landed from the EU27 EEZ (100,000 tonnes). By value, EU27 boats’ landings were more than six times greater.

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Contact

Please direct enquiries to Dr Ian Napier (ian.napier@uhi.ac.uk).