As success stories go, it takes some beating.

Barely two months after enterprising chef and professional Tesco-botherer Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall took to our screens with his campaign against discards, the bureaucrats of Brussels have caved in, putting an outright ban of the practice firmly on the cards.

It's such a surprisingly decisive move, even the chef himself seemed taken aback when he was asked about it this week.

Spoilsports will point out that anti-discard sentiments weren't exactly invented by Mr F-W (there is even talk in some quarters of bandwagon-jumping), but there is no doubt that it was his Channel 4 programme that brought the scandal of perfectly good fish being thrown back into the sea to the attention of the wider public.

What happens next is a slightly trickier question. The proposal to ban discards has already split opinion, and the practicalities of implementing and policing a ban have yet to be worked out.

The real fish fight is only just ­beginning.

Don't miss next week's issue on 'how to police the seas'. Plus our special on the new generation of celebrity chefs.

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