DEFRA : new rules target black-market fish traders
02 September, 2005 – NEW rules came into force yesterday that will clamp down on black-market fish traders. The new measures, not yet in force in Scotland for shellfish, improve the way fish landings are monitored by requiring the registration of buyers and sellers of fish sold for the first time after landing. The sales notes submitted by them will provide an independent record of catches which can be used to cross-check data received from fishing vessel records.
The regulations, say Ministers, will help protect the fishing industry by reducing an illegal trade that undermines legitimate fishermen, threatens fish stocks, and makes accurate scientific research difficult. All businesses are now required to register with the relevant Fisheries Department and submit sales notes for their purchases, giving consumers an assurance that the fish they are buying is from a legitimate and sustainable source.
This is a one-off procedure for businesses and will not cause any substantial changes in the way that fish is legally bought.
Application forms (Form No. RBS 1) are available on the Defra website www.defra.gov.uk/corporate/regulat/forms/fish/rbs1.htm