Scottish sectoral Quota Management Groups (QMGs)

Sectoral quota management, trialling Scottish sectoral QMGs and the recognition process for prospective QMGs


To inform future policy, Marine Scotland is to trial the establishment of sectoral Quota Management Groups (QMGs). Private bodies, which meet the recognition criteria and objectives for QMGs, will be granted sectoral management rights and responsibilities for the quota associated with licences of vessels they administer until the end of 2021.

In Scotland sectoral quota management responsibility has been granted to Fisheries Producer Organisations (POs) recognised under EU legislation. Scottish POs continue to effectively manage the fishing quota allocated to them in order to help maximise the fishing opportunities of their vessels and ensure that Scotland does not fish in excess of permitted levels.

QMGs will sit alongside POs, and will have specific objectives and criteria.

Marine Scotland’s aims for the trial are to:

  • Help inform future policy around sectoral quota management as part of our Future Fisheries Management initiative.
  • Gain insight into the benefit returned to Scottish communities by QMGs/sectoral groups.
  • Gain a greater understanding of the utilisation of quota, a national asset, by private bodies.
  • Establish whether private bodies outside of the PO structure can manage quota effectively, and in line with Scottish Government objectives.

QMGs will need to demonstrate how they align with Scottish Government objectives for the management of sea fisheries, specifically how they:

  • Optimise annual quota opportunities across Scotland's fish stocks.
  • Optimise the sustainable harvesting of wild fish.
  • Support Scottish communities where fishing is a viable career option and value is added throughout the supply chain maximising the contribution fisheries makes to Scotland.

At the foot of this page you can download an overview document and a guidance document for further information on the trial.

If you have any queries, or wish to request a QMG application form, please email

Overview document: further information on sectoral quota management and an outline of the recognition process for potential Quota Management Groups.

Application guidance: document to assist organisations with their application for recognition as a Scottish sectoral QMG.

Overview document
Application guidance


Back to top