Shetland Shellfish Earn Eco Honour


SHETLAND, U.K. — Scottish Fisherman who make their catch in Shetland are about to receive a rare and coveted environmental distinction, the UK Guardian reports.

According to the paper, about 120 Shetland fishermen are expected to be the first in the world to receive an environmental sustainability certificate for lobster and scallops as well as brown and velvet crabs from the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC). The distinction could make the shellfish a coveted menu item in fine-dining restaurants, a significant leap from the “poor cousin” status the fish were saddled with before.

Gary and Jonathan Leask, brothers who fish along Shetland’s coastline, told The Guardian that winning the MSC’s approval will increase the cachet of the catch for consumers and industry buyers. “We’sre hoping the value of our scallops will rise,” said Gary. “But it’s more looking after the stock. If the stock is right, there will be fishing for years to come.”

“The main thing is that if we want to have a future at this, we have to have the stock,” Jonathan told the paper. “We all have buyers [for our shellfish] so the market is there, but trying to improve the market is the thing. This will improve that. It’s exciting.”

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