Why is the fishing industry important

Sustainable fishing

Fishing can only exist in the long term if the state of the environment becomes its core issue. Only sustainable fisheries can keep our seas healthy and preserve fish as a resource in the long term. The WWF with its entire European network has committed itself to the implementation of this goal.

Sustainable fishing means that the fishing methods used and their application keep the fish stocks at a sustainable level and that their reproductive capacity is not restricted. Furthermore, sustainable fishing aims to minimize the effects on marine ecology and undesired by-catches as far as possible. All of these goals are set out in the EU's Common Fisheries Policy (CFP), but are only implemented slowly and inadequately by the EU member states.

Criteria for a sustainable European fishery from the WWF's point of view:

  • Overfishing will stop. Catch amounts are determined according to the best scientific knowledgeso that only as much is fished as can be regrown.
  • The discard ban is consistently implemented. Discards are already avoided when caught through the use of selective fishing methods. The innovation in fishing technology for the practical implementation of the discard ban is specifically promoted. By better planning when and where to fish, areas are specifically avoided in which there are, for example, a lot of young fish. The implementation of the discard ban is consistently and comprehensively monitored, e.g. through the use of cameras on board. Violations of the rules are punished to a deterrent extent.
  • Protected areas in the sea are protected from the influence of harmful fishing methodsso that the fish stocks there can recover, which then deliver sustainable and better yields outside the areas.
  • Long-term, multi-annual plans for every fishery in the EU are tailor-made jointly by representatives from fisheries, environmental protection, science and politics. As part of these plans, the principle of the “highest possible permanent yield” for sustainable fishing and an ecosystem approach to fisheries management are firmly anchored. A quick rethink in fisheries management is long overdue. We must use our common resources sustainably and deal with them more responsibly, no matter where we fish. Doing the right thing together - now.
  • Harmful fishing subsidies, the e.g. toOvercapacities in the fishing fleet and too Lead to overfishingthat reduce operating costs to such an extent that even unprofitable, unsustainable fishing activities can be continued, or that contribute to illegal, unreported or unregulated (IUU) fishing, are terminated. State Subsidies that are detrimental to marine biodiversity and lead to overfishing, should be like this instead be redirectedthat they contribute to the reconstruction and preservation of healthy fish stocks and long-term sustainable fishing with low environmental impact - also for the benefit of coastal communities.

Trade and consumers put more pressure on fisheries

Sustainable fish products from wild catches come from both sea and inland fishing and are labeled accordingly on the packaging. The area of ​​aquaculture has become indispensable nowadays with 50% and here, too, there are products from sustainable breeding that are labeled accordingly.

More and more consumers want to make a contribution against the exploitation of the oceans and are asking for fish and seafood from environmentally friendly fisheries. The trade has also recognized the problem and is increasingly offering products from responsible catches. In fact, nowhere in the world are there more products with the MSC seal to buy than in Germany.

  • Aquaculture

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  • ASC: Seal of approval for fish farming

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  • The MSC seal for fish

    Orientation when buying fish: MSC is still the quickest help for consumers when buying fish. But the WWF is calling for swift reforms. Continue reading ...