As of Friday, Sept. 17th, DFO reports that 1,041 tonnes of mackerel — 52% of the remaining 2,000-tonne total allowable catch (TAC) for 2021 — have been taken.
This year’s TAC was set at 4,000 tonnes (half the 2020 quota), but was divided in half to account for the migration of mackerel through Maritime/Quebec/NL waters, and to give all fleets a chance to catch some.
That's even though catches by NL harvesters represented the vast majority of Canadian landings for years. (Find that information in the mackerel rebuilding plan here.)
The second 2,000-tonne portion of the overall mackerel quota opened in NL waters on Aug. 15.
The 2021 mackerel price was rolled over from 2020 (the FFAW still hasn’t updated its site.)
The per pound price paid to harvesters in 2020 was down a fraction from 2019:
• 200-400 gram, 22¢/lb;
• 400-600 gram, 26¢/lb;
• 600 gram plus 34¢/lb.
Find the 2020 price decision here.
Last year, the FFAW argued the share to harvesters hadn't kept pace with markets, particularly in 2019, and requested a share “recalibration.”
In response, the province’s price-setting panel said straight up it “does not have access to the information required to make an informed, evidence-based decision on this issue.”
This year's mackerel price wasn't settled by the price setting panel, which produces a written report.
Instead, the price was hammered out by the FFAW and Association of Seafood Producers, which don't provide such reports, so there's no way to know what happened in negotiations.
Canada's Atlantic mackerel fishery pales in comparison to the commercial fishery off northern Europe.
The 2021 mackerel quota for Norway, the European Union, and the Faroe Islands amounted to 853,000 tonnes. The countries couldn’t agree to sharing arrangements after Brexit, and unilaterally set their own.
Undercurrent News reported this week that there will likely be a reduction in the 2022 mackerel quota. Recent survey results reveal a 58% drop in biomass since 2020.
The article also speculated that a drop in landings will translate into an increase in prices.
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