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Volume 984: debated on Tuesday 6 May 1980

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asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he has accepted the 5 per cent. by-catch on herring for Community vessels fishing in United Kingdom waters; and whether this agreement was reached after consultation with the responsible bodies representing the fishing industry.

EEC regulation 754/80 fixing total allowable catches for 1980 requires that, except in specified areas off the south-west approaches where special provisions apply, by-catches of herring landed at the end of each voyage may not exceed 10 per cent. by weight of catches of sprat and 5 per cent. of catches of other species. Representatives of the fishing industry had general discussions with my right hon. Friend and myself before the last Fisheries Council: the provision about by-catches was not specifically discussed.