Data relating to foreign fishing vessels: EIR release

Information request and response under the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004

Information requested

Foreign fishing vessels that have landed fish into Scrabster, Lochinver and Ullapool for the following information order the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA).

1. How many vessels catches were physically inspected?

2. How much Tonnages of fish we’re landed?

3. How many fish species were recorded?

4. How were sizes of fish recorded?

5. Was the sea fishing area recorded?

6. How many tonnes of crab claws were landed?

7. Was vessel fishing gear inspected?

8. How many fishing infringements were recorded?

9. How many GBR registered demersal whitefish vessels landed in Scottish ports from August 1st 2021 to December 31st 2021?

10. How many GBR vessels were inspected during the above period?

11. How many GBR vessels fishing infringements were detected?


As the information you have requested is 'environmental information' for the purposes of the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004 (EIRs), we are required to deal with your request under those Regulations. We are applying the exemption at section 39(2) of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA), so that we do not also have to deal with your request under FOISA.

This exemption is subject to the 'public interest test'. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption, because there is no public interest in dealing with the same request under two different regimes. This is essentially a technical point and has no material effect on the outcome of your request.

1. A total of eleven vessels were inspected.

2. 5811 tonnes were landed by the vessels into ports of Scrabster, Lochinver and Ullapool.

3. Fifty species of fish were recorded in these landings.

4. During inspections all fish that have a minimum conservation reference size are checked to ensure they comply with the minimum size. Due to the landing obligation fishermen now have to land all catches of quota stocks, including fish that do not meet the MRCS ( with a few derogations as detailed here Fishing vessel landing obligation guidance 2022 - ( These fish have to be landed in separate containers and are not permitted to be sold for human consumption, however it is permissible to sell them for bait or other non-human consumption uses.

They may not be sold alongside fish for human consumption and are subject to the controls of category 3 NHC, details of which may be found here: Animal by-product categories, site approval, hygiene and disposal - GOV.UK(

5. Yes the sea fishing area was recorded.

6. There was no crab claws recorded in these landings.

7. Yes vessel fishing gear was inspected.

8. No fishing infringements were recorded.

9. 155 Scottish demersal vessels landed into Scottish Ports in this period.

10. Please note that this information is due to be updated in the next 14 days to include data up to the end of the year.

11. There was 49 GBR vessel infringements detected.

About FOI
The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at


Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road

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