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Back Food Fishing Bangor experts save Isle of Man fishery

Bangor experts save Isle of Man fishery

Bangor University’s School of Ocean Sciences has helped the fishery producing Manx Queenies, the Isle of Man’s queen scallops, to be awarded a sustainability certification under the Marine Stewardship Council programme.

Once in decline, the now sustainably fished ‘queenie’ fishery is providing a high value product sought after by best restaurants around the UK.

Experts in sustainable fisheries at the School have worked with the Isle of Man (IOM) Government’s Department of Environment Food and Agriculture since 2006, to advise them how to manage the fishery sustainably.

They have also worked closely with the fishing industry to avoid previous periods of ‘boom and bust’.

Professor Mike Kaiser who led this research explained: “Our science addressed the key questions about the sustainability of the fishery.This required an intensive effort to gather data about scallop stocks,seabed habitats and the by catch associated with the fishing gear. However noneof this would have mattered without fishermen’s cooperation.

"Providing workable policies for sustainable fisheries relies on far more than evidence about the marine life - we need to take human behaviour into account as well. We are just as important an element in the equation.

“Achieving MSC Sustainable Fisheries accreditation is a further boost for the now lucrative Queenie fishery industry. The MSC logo will add to their success, enabling consumers to buy their product with confidence and a clear conscience that they are purchasing fish from a sustainable source.

“Achieving this accreditation provides a valuable model for other fisheries,showing what can be achieved through open dialogue and cooperation- as opposed to enforcement.”

Scallops caught by Isle of Man registered dayboats are prized by chefs and celebrated annually in the Isle of Man in the three-day Queenie Festival.