A significant drop in the supply of British seafoods could be on the cards following EC proposals to cut Scottish fishing quotas by up to 50% for some species.

It emerged last week that EU fisheries commissioner Maria Damanaki had proposed to cut the cod quota for Scotland's west coast by 50%, with haddock reduced by 25% and prawns being cut by 15% on the west coast and by 9% in the North Sea.

It was unclear what would happen with quotas for shared stocks with Norway, but there were indications the Commission planned to further restrict these, said the Scottish Fishermen's Federation.

Fishermen were particularly concerned about the prospect of lower quotas for prawns, a mainstay of commercial fishing in Scotland, the SFF added. Its chief executive Bertie Armstrong also criticised the EC for releasing details to the ­media without informing stakeholders first.

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