Navigation path

Fisheries

INSEPARABLE - Eat, Buy and Sell Sustainable FishINSEPARABLE - Eat, Buy and Sell Sustainable FishINSEPARABLE - Eat, Buy and Sell Sustainable FishINSEPARABLE - Eat, Buy and Sell Sustainable Fish

Search
    Free text
Related content
News
The European Commission will be unveiling sustainable seafood guides at Slow Food's Salone del Gusto – Terra Madre in Turin on 23rd October 2014, as part of "Inseparable", a European initiative to help consumers make sustainable seafood choices.
The European Commission has today issued a report on the measures taken by EU countries to ensure the recovery of European eel.
The European Commission has today adopted a series of discard plans as it gears up for the introduction of an obligation to land all catches on 1 January 2015.

National eel management plans

The European eel (Anguilla anguilla) stock is severely depleted. According to estimates from the International Council for Exploration of the Seas (ICES), until 2011, the recruitment level of glass eels (the number of baby eel produced each year) was only 1 % of what it was before the 1980s. Despite a statistically significant increase in glass eels recruitment since 2011, the abundance of eels at all the stages of their lifecycle remains very low.

According to EU legislation, EU countries need to take measures that allow 40 % of adult eels to escape from inland waters to the sea, where they can spawn. In order to meet this 40% escapement target, EU countries with eel habitats in their territory have drawn up and are currently implementing national eel management plans at river-basin level. In their plans, EU countries propose measures, such as

  • limiting (professional and recreational) fisheries;
  • making it easier for fish to migrate through the rivers
  • restocking suitable inland waters with young eel.

In addition, EU countries which catch glass eels (juvenile eel less than 12 cm long) need to reserve 60 % of their catches for restocking within the EU. The Commission has adopted all plans submitted by 19 EU countries, plus a joint plan for the Minho River.

European eel is also listed on Annex II of CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species). Based on the annual recommendations of the Scientific Review Group comprising experts from EU countries, international trade of European eel into and out of the EU is currently prohibited until the end of 2015.

Documents

Council Regulation (EC) 1100/2007, establishing measures for the recovery of the stock of European eel

Report on the outcome of the implementation of the Eel Management Plans, including an evaluation of the measures concerning restocking and of the evolution of market prices for eels less than 12 cm in length (21/10/2014)