We eat more cod in the UK than any other white fish. Despite recent fears, the supply of high quality, sustainable cod to British fish & chip shops is unaffected either by climate change or Brexit as well over 90% of the cod we eat is imported from outside the EU.
FASFA has produced a short film to explain this and it can be viewed on-line at - www.youtube.com/watch?v=i8WEnLUrmqg&t=30s
While the North Sea undoubtedly will prove a political hot
bed as regards to future British fishing rights outside the EU and has seen the impact of warming sea temperatures on
fish stocks over the last century, it is of limited significance to our hunger for long-term cod supplies.
The UK quota for North Sea cod is only 13,100 tonnes and we need more than ten times that just to supply our fish & chip shops.
The Barents Sea alone has a total allowable catch of 890,000 tonnes compared with only 15,353 tonnes landed by British vessels in 2015 into local ports. The overall supply of Atlantic cod is forecasted to remain about the same in 2017 as 2015/16. Around 70% of imported cod is caught in the Barents Sea, with 25% from well managed Icelandic, Faroese, Norwegian and Russian waters.
The major part (63%) of this international supply is imported as frozen fillets and much of these are top-quality frozen-at-sea fillets. FASFA – the Frozen At Sea Fillets Association believe this is going to prove key to a sustainable future for fish and chips.