Publication - Statistics

Scottish Sea Fisheries Statistics 2020

Published: 29 Sep 2021

National Statistics publication that provides data on the tonnage and value of all landings of sea fish and shellfish by Scottish vessels, all landings into Scotland, the rest of the UK and abroad, and the size and structure of the Scottish fishing fleet and employment on Scottish vessels.

Scottish Sea Fisheries Statistics 2020


1. Values are based on 2020 prices, but percentage changes reflect real changes after adjusting for inflation.

2. Values may not sum to their respective totals due to rounding.

3. There is a small discrepancy between the values presented in Table 5. Scottish vessels' landings anywhere and Table 27. Scottish vessels' landings by gear type, which happens because a significant amount of Nephrops is caught by demersal gear types. Other species may also be effected by this.

4. This publication always reports tonnages in live weight equivalent, so Nephrops landed as 'tails' are multiplied by a standardised conversion factor so that they are made comparable to Nephrops landed whole.

5. ICES is the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea.

6. Landings can exceed quota if POs or vessels 'carry over' some quota from a previous year into the next year. This can only be done within agreed limits. There is also an allowance so that a country can exceed up to ten per cent of its quota on a particular stock and the excess is deducted from the following year's quota allocation.

7. The 'Non fishing' category includes vessels which hold an active licence but did not report any catch in the year stated.

8. Figures for the Scottish labour force come from the Annual Population Survey 2020 by ONS. Note: Annual Population Survey responses for Jan-Dec 2020 have been weighted to new populations derived using growth rates from HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) Real Time Information (RTI) to allow for different trends during the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.

9. Regular and Irregular not does translate directly to full or part time. Fishers often work for a defined 'crew share', or percentage of the vessel's earnings, rather than a formal employment contract with specified working hours.

10. The 2019 data for cod landings by rest of the UK vessels into the rest of the UK has been updated to include imputed values for missing sales. See Annex 1, section 7.5.3 for more details.

11. In this 2020 edition of Scottish Sea Fisheries Statistics, the UK figures are included in the European Union totals for 2019. In future publications the UK figures will no longer be included in the EU figures.

12. 2019 Catch data for Denmark, Ireland and Latvia are unavailable, therefore the most recent catch data available for these countries has been used.

13. The UK landings figure is slightly lower in Eurostat than in UK Sea Fisheries Statistics due to slight methodological differences in the time of year the data are processed. For 2019 the difference is approximately 4,600 tonnes or 0.7 per cent difference.

14. The number of UK vessels differs between UK Sea Fisheries Statistics and Eurostat due to methodological differences. MMO use the UK fleet register to count the number of vessels across the whole UK plus the Islands (Guernsey, Jersey and Isle of Man) as at 31st December in the year being reported. Eurostat use the EU Community Fleet Register to enumerate vessel numbers. The figure reported here is from Eurostat to maintain consistency when comparing across European nations.