Scotland’s entire fishing industry should be helped to gain eco-label status, said WWF Scotland today (Thursday 16 June).
The environmental group made the call following the news  that 120 fishermen on Shetland are set to become the first in the world to be granted the prestigious Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certification for lobster, scallops and brown and velvet crabs.
The distinctive blue eco-label is the global standard for sustainable fishing and seafood traceability that aims to increase the availability of certified sustainable seafood. It also makes it easier for shoppers to know what they are buying.
Last year, North Sea haddock was the first Scottish whitefish to gain MSC certification.
WWW Scotland’s Marine Policy Officer, Mireille Thom, said:
“This is a positive and timely development that offers a great incentive to others in Scotland’s fishing industry to move towards more sustainable fishing practices.
“We are particularly pleased to see these small inshore fisheries gain MSC status as they play such a vital role in the economies of so many of our coastal communities.
“Gaining the MSC label shows that a stock is being fished at a sustainable level and in a way that protects both the resource and the marine environment that sustains it.”
WWF Scotland is campaigning for action to see 100 per cent of Scottish fisheries certified as sustainable.
Ms Thom, added:
“Given the boost that such labelling provides for both fishing communities and the marine environment we urge all political parties to ensure support is offered to help all Scottish fisheries achieve Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certification. Sustainable fisheries help secure jobs and help to protect the wider marine environment.”
NOTES TO EDITORS:
Contact: Mandy Carter
Phone: 01350 728200