The price of fish
James recently threw his weight behind a local campaign to protect the ‘Filey Few’ – the seven small fishing boats that still make a living from the seas off the town.
For five months of the year, these local fishermen used traditional techniques to catch valuable sea trout. Inevitably they occasionally catch a salmon, stocks of which are in decline, but these are released back into the sea.

New rules set to be introduced by the Environment Agency last year to protect Atlantic salmon stocks caught these relative small fry in their nets alongside the bigger boys, threatening to end a tradition dating back centuries.



Headed by local fisherman Rex Harrison, a campaign was launched to raise awareness of their plight, and James joined forces with other chefs, including Ed Baines from Soho’s Randall & Aubin, to up the profile at an awareness day. Rex Harrison said: “We're desperate for the Government to show commitment to sustainable fishing, and help keep us on the water for the next generation. We leave no impact on the environment, only take what we need to make a living – but our fishery might be quietly wiped off the map whilst the big business of fishing is on the news every day. We want to work with the EA to make sure salmon stocks are protected, and our fishing community is protected, too.”



James added: “I remember when I was growing up watching the local fisherman heading out to check their nets for sea trout in the summer – it’s a real seasonal delicacy, a marker of the British summer on the coast. I’d hate to see the industry die out, and with it any opportunity to enjoy local sea trout.”

The campaign saw some success – the fishermen are now allowed to fish for sea trout for four months of the year, from April to July, with a full decision postponed until 2020.


PUBLISHED :November 2019
TAGS : FOODTHE MACKENZIESHOSPITALITY
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