Researchers return to Argyll for annual fishing survey

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The body representing the UK seafood industry is looking for Argyll fishing skippers and boat owners to take part in its annual survey of the fleet.

This year’s survey, the 12th of its kind, will travel the length and breadth of the UK, with researchers in ports from Campbeltown to Crinan, including Islay, between August 14 and August 18.

Researchers will be gathering data on fishing and vessel costs to provide a comprehensive overview of the financial and operational performance of the fishing industry.

The 2017 survey hopes to uncover a similar success story to last year, which saw the UK fishing sector experience its best economic performance since 2008.

The most recent results published found that the total UK fleet income increased by 19 per cent, while the operating profit increased year-on-year by an estimated 22 per cent.

The researchers will also canvass fishermen’s views on a range of current and future industry issues.

Despite last year being positive for the sector, a number of skippers and vessel owners expressed concerns about the future. Uncertainty in regulation and political developments, issues around quota availability and affordability and market prices made the list.

The next round of research, to be published in 2018, is crucial for uncovering the direction the industry is moving in. With the UK set to exit the EU in 2019, the survey will capture the mood on the ground and provide an insight in to the expectations and concerns of the fishing industry.

Steve Lawrence, economics project manager at Seafish, said: ‘Our annual survey provides us with a detailed picture of the UK fishing fleet’s economic performance. The insight it provides means we can keep all those involved in the sector fully informed on the health of the fleet.

‘The report is also made available to policy makers and is a good opportunity for fishermen to voice their opinion on the big issues affecting them.

‘We appreciate the continued support of the fishing industry in Argyll and encourage all skippers and vessel owners in the area to speak to our researchers.’

All vessel owners can benefit directly from participation by requesting a free financial performance benchmark report which allows comparisons with the average performance of other similar vessels.

The survey is supported by the national federations and local associations around the UK. All information provided is treated as confidential and no individual vessel figures will be revealed in any report.

Anyone interested in taking part in the survey should contact Steve Lawrence at Seafish on 0131 524 8663 or email


The industry has been performing well despite uncertainty. 06_a32fishing01