Leading Journal of the Irish & UK Fishing Industries

Landings at Europe’s largest whitefish port remained resilient at the beginning of the year despite the combined pressures of poor quotas, harsh winter weather and, latterly, increases in fuel prices.

A total of 7,043 tonnes of whitefish worth £15.5 million was landed at Peterhead in January and February – compared with 6,235 tonnes (£11.1 million) for the same two months in 2021.

The trend was reflected in the pelagic and shellfish sectors, with the value of landings up albeit from a slightly reduced tonnage.

Pelagic landings of 28,993 tonnes (32,646 in 2021) turned over £33.3 million (£31.5 million in 2021).

And shellfish landings of 1,048 tonnes (1,197 in 2021) turned over £2.5 million (£1.9 million in 2021).

Peterhead Port Authority will be exhibiting at Scottish Skipper Expo 2022, and its chief executive Simon Brebner said: “This was a strong performance in the early stage of the year, amid some significant headwinds, and demonstrates again the great value of the infrastructure and facilities the port is able to offer to the fishing sector.

“Looking forward, high fuel prices are bound to have a constraining effect, accounting for an alarming share of vessels’ costs.

“The sector is remarkably resilient, but is craving a period of stability and hopefully as the year goes on these external factors will begin to ease.”