- Certifier :
- Control Union (UK) Limited
- Certified status :
- Certified since :
- 03 Feb 2016
- Certificate expires :
- 02 Aug 2021
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
Catch by Species
|Species||Reported Catch Year||Metric Tonnes|
|Blue whiting(=Poutassou) (Micromesistius poutassou)||2019||292,000|
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.
About this Fishery
This North East Atlantic fishery straddles Faroese, EU and international waters. It uses pelagic trawls to target the blue whiting (Micromesistius poutassou).
Blue whiting only began to be fished in the 1970s, but soon became a significant target species, for use primarily in fishmeal, oil and aquaculture. Today, the fish is also used for human consumption.
More than a million tonnes of blue whiting were harvested annually in the decade from 1998 to 2008, but stock levels fell dramatically, and much smaller catches were recommended (to put this in perspective, the total quota for 2011 was 40,100 tonnes, compared to the record harvest of 2.4 million tonnes in 2004).
In 2005, the EU, Norway, Iceland and the Faroe Islands agreed on a long-term management plan for the fishery, aiming to control harvests at precautionary levels to ensure long term sustainability. ICES monitor stock levels and advise accordingly. There have been some disputes over how national quotas are set, but generally the agreement appears to be safeguarding whiting populations.
In 2013 the blue whiting harvest amounted to around 55,000 tonnes, most of which went to markets in Africa and China.