Why Britain needs a diverse fishing fleet

‚ÄčThe diversity in the British fleet is one of its greatest strengths. With the demand for seafood increasing year on year it is crucial that the sector is well equipped to keep pace and ensure enough fish is landed in a manner that is sustainable, both environmentally and economically.

Big boats hoover up the ocean and are inherently more unsustainable than a small fishing boat Big boats have unfair access to most of the UK fishing quota

Here are the top five reasons for ensuring we maintain a diverse fleet:

1. The British fishing industry is built on the interdependence of boats of all sizes

2. It allows the industry to guarantee a continual source of food to the country

3. Smaller boats work from small local harbours and catch what is known as 'day fish' and are highly regarded by local restaurants

4. Larger boats are able to work further offshore and in rougher weather than their smaller counterparts, allowing them to catch different offshore species

5. Many ports and processing centres rely on the volume of fish landed by the larger boats to ensure their operations remain economically viable

Lowestoft is just one port that has seen large numbers of processors, fishmongers and smaller boats have to cease trading or move operations elsewhere as they cannot operate sustainably without the larger boats.

For more information on why fleet diversity is so important to the UK fishing industry, watch this video.