UK fishing volume down, value up

The Marine Management Organization (MMO) on Thursday published its annual UK Sea Fisheries Statistics 2011 report, which shows a drop in quantity but an increase in value of fish landed by the UK fleet.

In 2011, UK vessels landed 600,000 metric tons (MT) of seafood domestically and abroad valued at GBP 828 million. This is a slight decline of about 1 percent in quantity, but a 15 percent increase in value compared to 2010. The rise is attributed primarily to a more than 40 percent increase in the average price of pelagic fish.

Landings of demersal fish decreased by 5 percent between 2010 to 2011, pelagic landings decreased by 1 percent and shellfish landings rose by 3 percent over the same period. Demersal fish accounted for 35 percent of the total landings value with pelagic and shellfish comprising 30 percent and 35 percent, respectively.

The UK’s top ports were Peterhead, Lerwick and Fraserburgh, accounting for 45 percent by quantity and 39 percent by value of all landings by UK vessels into the UK.

Seafood imports rose to 720,000 MTs, up 2 percent from 2010. Exports decreased by 15 percent to 437,000 MT over the same time period. The UK’s highest imports were cod, tuna, salmon and shrimp and prawn. The main exports were salmon, mackerel and cod.

In 2011, Iceland was the UK’s top importer, followed by China and Thailand. France, the Netherlands and the United States received the largest amount of UK exports.

The number of fishing vessels dropped 17 percent to 6,444 compared to 7,721 in 2011. The number of fishermen also dropped 17 percent to about 12,400 compared to 10 years ago.

The full report is available on the MMO website.


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