Certifier : 
Global Trust Certification Ltd.
Certified status : 
Certified since : 
30 Jul 2013
Certificate expires : 
16 Aug 2024


Fisheries are composed of one or more parts, each of which is entitled to receive an MSC certificate. These parts or “units” are defined by their target stock(s), fishing gear type(s) and if relevant vessel type(s), and the fishing fleets or groups of vessels.

When the term “Unit of Certification” is used for fishing units that are in assessment, it refers to the “Unit of Assessment” or “Unit of potential certification”. Expand a status below to view the parts that form this fishery. To check the detailed scope, download the latest certificate or open the Assessments page to get the latest report. Find out more by visiting our page on Fisheries

Units of Certification & Certificate Information

  • Certified
    MSC UoC Number Species Gear Type Ocean Area Certificate Code
    UoC-0703 Blue mussel (Mytilus edulis) Dredges - Boat dredges 27 (Atlantic, Northeast) MSC-F-31386 (F-SAI-008)

View glossary of terms

Catch by Species

Species Reported Catch Year Metric Tonnes
Blue mussel (Mytilus edulis) 2021 1,407

Information is provided by an independent Conformity Assessment Body as live weight (the weight of species at the time of catch, before processing) and where a fishing season covers multiple years, the end year is given as the reported catch year. Additional information is available in the latest report, see the assessments page.

Eligibility, client groups and vessel lists

A fishery may choose to define the members of the fishery certificate. These members can be vessels or other client group members (e.g. companies that own vessels and/or companies that are named as eligible to handle certified product covered within the fishery certificate scope). Please refer to the fishery certificate statement on additional product specific eligibility criteria (e.g. product eligibility limitations, eligibility date, exclusive points of landing and the point where Chain of Custody certificate is required). Please consult the fishery Public Certification Report for product eligibility rationale.

Documents Published on Files
List of client group members 10 Jan 2019 1 files

About this Fishery

Mussel (Mytilus edulis) image © Scandinavian Fishing Year Book

The blue mussel – or Diúilicín in Irish – is a widely distributed bivalve shellfish that adapts to a wide variety of ecological situations. Mussels are filter feeders, feeding on phytoplankton and suspended organic matter in the water column. This reliance on a natural food source, coupled with their general sessile (fixed) nature, makes them ideal for cultivation.

Fishing involves collecting mussels in mid-summer to early autumn and moving them to inshore, protected areas to grow. The mussels are then harvested from licensed and leased beds at any time of the year.

The cross-border certified fishery covers both the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. A total of 37 vessels are licensed to collect seed mussels within permitted harvest areas in Lough Swilly, (Cromane) Castlemaine, Youghal harbour, Waterford harbour, Wexford harbour, Lough Foyle and Carlingford Lough South Shore. These are collected by towing a dredge behind a small boat or, in the case of a few small-scale operators, by using a hand-held rake at low tide. 

The mussels on in underwater cultivation plots by 94 aquaculture permit holders.

If you want to learn more about all current UK & Irish Fisheries’ journeys to certification, find out where to buy UK and Irish seafood with the blue fish, and get your hands on the latest mouth-watering recipes, visit the UK & Irish Fisheries Spotlight.

Market Information

Bottom mussels are sold in fresh (live) and prepared forms (fresh, frozen or vacuum-packed in sauce or as ready meals) into the wholesale, retail and food service markets. Products are largely exported to Europe (France, Benelux, UK, Germany and others) and the US (prepared frozen mussels in sauce).