MSC for cross-border Irish mussels

The bottom grown blue mussel sector if a key contributor to the aquculture sector in ROI and NI The bottom grown blue mussel sector if a key contributor to the aquculture sector in ROI and NI

The bottom grown blue mussel sector in Northern Ireland (NI) and the Republic of Ireland (ROI) has received Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certification.

The cross-border fishery, which is a key contributor to the aquaculture sector in the region, is supported by the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development in NI and the Department of Agriculture Food and Marine.

“This is a significant achievement by the Irish and Northern Irish mussel fisheries,” said Claire Pescod, outreach manager, MSC.

“This cross border collaboration between their respective governments and industry is a great example of how governments can work together to ensure the long term sustainability of fisheries as well as the long term sustainability of their fishing industries and coastal communities,” she added.

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

In 2011, the fishery produced 7,613 tonnes of mussels in Northern Ireland and 12,524 tonnes in the Republic of Ireland. Together their production was worth over €17m.

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