The European Union voted through the reform of the Common Fisheries Policy in early 2013, following our long-running campaign involving governments, businesses, other environmental organisations and the general public to secure the best deal for the health of our seas. This provides a real possibility that our fisheries will be able to recover from decades of overfishing - and we are committed to working with stakeholders to ensure that the new legislation is implemented.
Some fishing practices have become a major threat to the health of our oceans, destroying or altering the physical environment and changing the habitat where marine animals live. The current crisis facing worldwide fish stocks, and increasing reports of the impacts of fishing activities on the wider marine environment, have heightened consumer concerns and raised issues about the fish we eat.
As the global population continues to increase, demand for seafood is growing rapidly. Consumers can make a difference to the way our fish stocks are managed. By only choosing fish from healthy, responsibly managed sources, you can help drive the market towards sustainable seafood.
Aquaculture is an important industry in the UK, and is the fastest growing food production system in the world. We are starting to see farmed fish and shellfish appearing on retailers’ shelves and in restaurants more often now. However, the impacts from aquaculture can have an effect on nearby marine environments.