On 15 and 16 June, Fisheries Minister Victoria Prentis visited Brixham, one of England’s busiest fishing ports to witness the outstanding work carried out by local industry. Meeting with traders, processors and fishing industry representatives, Minister Prentis had the opportunity to discuss some of the current issues facing the industry.
The fact-finding trip began with a virtual roundtable meeting attended by local industry. Minister Prentis heard more about the range of opportunities and challenges facing them including the impact of Covid-19, changes to export requirements, the need for effective management of non-quota stocks and the importance of international quota swaps.
This morning, Minister Prentis visited Brixham’s iconic fish market and later met Devon & Severn Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority (IFCA), the Marine Management Organisation and the Fishermen’s Mission to discuss the management of local fisheries and fishermen’s welfare.
Fisheries Minister Victoria Prentis said:
It’s been a pleasure to visit this historic and vibrant fishing port and see first-hand the community’s contribution to the UK economy across fishing and seafood processing. I was delighted to hear of the opportunities, innovative ideas and meet some real entrepreneurs.
Brixham is an important part of Britain’s future as an independent coastal state and with £100 million of government funding earmarked for investment in the industry, we are committed to supporting fishermen and coastal communities to make the most of the new opportunities outside of the EU.
Barry Young, Managing Director of Brixham Trawler Agents also commented:
We’re very pleased to welcome Minister Prentis to Brixham today. We’ve had the opportunity to showcase the diversity and quality of the fish and seafood caught, landed, sold and processed in the area and talk about the opportunities for the sector.”
Following a tour of the harbour and two fishing vessels, Minister Prentis had the opportunity to visit the Blue Seafood Company, who process crab, to see their operation and discuss current trading conditions.
During this visit, Minister Prentis reiterated the government’s commitment to supporting the fishing industry to the make the most of the opportunities that come from the UK’s departure from the Common Fisheries Policy.