Aodh O’Donnell, CEO of the Irish Fish Producers Organisation speaks to Oliver McBride of The Fishing Daily Podcast about the recent controversy surrounding Nordic states looking to gain access to valuable fishing in the Irish EEZ.

Watch on Youtube here.


Earlier this year, the Irish fishing industry fought hard to keep the European Commission from granting access to the Norwegian fleet to fish for blue whiting in the Irish EEZ. Last week it was revealed that the EU has opened informal talks with Iceland over access to the Irish EEZ to fish Northeast Atlantic mackerel.

The IFPO have been highly critical of Iceland who process mackerel for fishmeal which goes for farmed salmon feed, rather than being used correctly as a valuable food source for human consumption.

Oliver asks Aodh if there have been any developments in the talks, what result does the IFPO believe as acceptable, and if there has been any communication with fishing organisations in other EU member states regarding the EU-Iceland talks.

An issue that was raised at a recent IFPO meeting in Killybegs reflected on the fact that none of the deals the European Commission have made for third country access to the Irish EEZ benefits Ireland or the Irish seafood industry. Oliver asks Aodh if he considers the actions by the European Commission justifiable.

It has been claimed in Nordic circles that the Irish fishing industry has been using Norway as leverage against the EU in order to improve its lot withing the Commission. The Irish industry has also levelled claims of overfishing and the creation of bogus track records the same countries. Oliver asks Aodh if these claims can be substantiated by the Irish?

Norway is claiming zonal attachment over Northeast Atlantic mackerel. Oliver asks Aodh should Ireland be supporting Norway’s claim as the Irish industry itself deems the European Commission’s principle of ‘relative stability’ from the Common Fisheries Policy, a total failure, and is also looking for the principle of zonal attachment to be introduced by the EU.

Decommissioning and another cut in Irish fish quotas due to the UK-EU Trade and Cooperation Agreement, which is the fallout Irish fishing suffered due to combination of the principle of relative stability and Brexit. Oliver asks how much his members in the IFPO have been impacted by these events.