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Volume and Value of Fish Landings Increase in 2014

Published: 3 Sep 2015 09:30

Statistics published today by Scotland's Chief Statistician show that the value of fish landed by Scottish vessels in 2014 increased by 18 per cent in real terms from 2013. The quantity of fish landed increased by 31 per cent from 2013.

These figures published today update the Provisional Scottish Sea Fisheries Statistics that were published in May 2015.

Landings by Scottish based vessels

There were 481 thousand tonnes of sea fish and shellfish landed by Scottish based vessels in 2014, with a value of £514 million. Compared to 2013 the real terms value increased by 18 per cent and the quantity of fish landed increased by 31 per cent. This increase in the overall value of landings was driven predominantly by an increase in value of pelagic species, although the other two species types also saw an increase in real terms value:

  • Pelagic landings values increased by 42 per cent to £220 million
  • Demersal landings values increased by one per cent to £143 million
  • Shellfish landings values increased by eight per cent to £151 million

Mackerel is the most valuable stock to the Scottish fleet, accounting for 38 per cent (£195 million) of the total value of Scottish landings. In 2014 mackerel landings increased in value in real terms by 52 per cent, driven by the quantity of mackerel landed increasing 79 per cent from 2013. In addition, Nephrops are the most valuable shellfish species to the Scottish fishing industry, accounting for 15 per cent (£75 million) of the total value of all Scottish landings. The value of Nephrops landings by Scottish vessels increased by 14 per cent in real terms from 2013, driven by an 11 per cent increase in the quantity landed and a three per cent increase in the price per tonne.

Quota Uptake by vessels in Scottish Producer Organisations

North Sea cod, North Sea monkfish and West of Scotland monkfish saw close to 100 per cent uptake of the quota available in 2014. Uptake for both North Sea haddock and West of Scotland haddock exceeded 100 per cent. North Sea Nephrops quota uptake reached 78 per and was higher than the uptake in 2013. This is due to a lower quota being set in 2014 as well as an increase in quantity landed. Quota uptake for North Sea herring and West of Scotland mackerel exceeded 100 per cent, similar to 2013.

Scottish Fishing Fleet

The number of active fishing vessels based in Scotland was 2,030 at the end of 2014, representing an increase of ten vessels (0.5 per cent) from 2013. At the end of 2014, there was:

  • A rise of 21 vessels in the 10m and under fleet to 1,447 vessels
  • A reduction of 11 vessels in the over 10m fleet to 583 vessels
    • Demersal sector reduced by ten vessels to 194 vessels
    • Shellfish sector increased by one vessel to 368 vessels
    • Pelagic sector reduced by two vessels to 21 vessels

Fishermen Employed

The number of fishermen employed on Scottish based vessels was 4,796 at the end of 2014. Compared to 2013, there are 196 fewer people employed on Scottish based vessels, representing a four per cent decrease.

Notes to editors

The Scottish Sea Fisheries Statistics 2014 can be accessed at:

The main source for Scottish Sea Fisheries Statistics is Marine Scotland's FIN (Fisheries Information Network) administrative data base containing information on sea fishing activity and catch details, including sales details from Registered Buyers and Sellers (RBS), input by Marine Scotland Compliance, based on information supplied by fishing vessels, buyers and sellers. Where necessary, this is supplemented by information from the equivalent "Rest of UK" administrative system, FAD, using data held in the UK data warehouse, IFISH. FIN holds details of all fish landings into Scotland and landings abroad by Scottish based vessels. Voyage and landings information is supplied by skippers who, for vessels over 10 metres, are required by EU legislation to maintain logbooks and provide landings declarations. Although this EU legislation does not require vessels of 10 metres and under to provide this information; in Scotland they provide equivalent information on the FISH1 forms. Data on first sales of fish, which provides information on the value of landings, is provided by fish buyers and sellers under EU legislation on the Register of Buyers and Sellers Information is collated and entered at port offices and then transmitted to the FIN central server.

Data on employment within the Scottish fishing fleet is collated by Marine Scotland in an annual survey distributed to port offices in each of the 18 Scottish fishing districts.

The Sea Fisheries Data Team will regularly update certain management information such as levels of quota uptake and fish prices. Further information on Agriculture and Fisheries statistics within Scotland.

National statistics are produced by professionally independent statistical staff.