In 2014, the Scottish Government launched a trial of expanded mackerel fisheries in Scotland’s inshore waters. Its intention was to provide more opportunities for inshore fishermen to expand and diversify, to encourage new entrants, to examine the potential for more low impact fisheries and to widen the benefits from quota to local communities around the coast.
In each of the past four years 10 metre and under (10mu) vessels in the non-sector have had access to approximately 1,000 tonnes of North Sea mackerel and 300 tonnes of West of Scotland mackerel. A key features of the arrangement have been open access to the fisheries for all 10mu non-sector licences.
The four year (2014-2017) trial is almost complete and the Scottish Government is considering the impacts of the trial and seeking views on the future of the inshore mackerel fishery.