Scottish fishermen say they are disappointed by the latest scientific advice to cut North Sea fish quotas.

The International Council for the Exploration of the Seas has advised the EU to outlaw cod fishing in the North Sea, slash whiting quotas by 79% and haddock by 15%, to allow fish stocks to replenish.

Haddock and whiting are mainstays of Scotland's £174m whitefish industry. "When we can't fulfil commitments our customers go elsewhere so cuts in Scottish haddock means a loss of orders to processors," said Danny Couper, spokesman for the Scottish Seafood Processors Federation.

He called for a better balance between conservation and the economic interests of Scottish fishing communities. Hamish Gordon, chief executive of the Aberdeen Fish Producers Organisation, said fishermen reported plentiful numbers of cod and haddock. A decision on 2008 fish quotas will be taken at the EU Fisheries Council marathon in December.

Topics