The newly appointed Minister of Marine, John Browne TD, has announced that he is adopting the recommendations of the National Salmon Commission.
The full announcement can be read at: Minister’s Announcement
Ummera welcomes the contents of this announcement as it at last gives some encouragement to those who have been concerned about the dramatically declining stocks of wild salmon in Irish waters.
It will undoubtedly have a serious impact on our business from next year, but I would prefer that than see salmon stocks declining to the point of extinction. I am sure that there will be wild salmon available in the future for us to smoke, but it may take several years before it can make a viable business. In the meantime, we are much encouraged by the response to our smoked organic salmon, our smoked chicken and smoked dry cured bacon rashers.
There has been far too much hot air and unsubstantiated statements from both sides, and both anglers and commercial fishermen are as guilty as each other. I trust that the anglers will not now cheer at the sufferings of the drift netsmen; they have to remember that, for the anglers, it is a hobby, but for the netsmen, it is part of their livelihood. For the drift netsmen, they must accept that they are part of the reason why stocks have declined so much recently – not the sole reason, but still an important part; those 100,000 fish that will be spared the net next year and thereafter will provide the basis on which our salmon stocks will start to grow once again.
The anglers have now to demonstrate their belief in conservation, by ensuring that catch and release is practiced wherever and whenever as witness of their concern for salmon stocks, especially in those rivers which are deemed to have stocks below the conservation limit.
A good day for the salmon – at long last.