Our Fish Response to Reckless Claims by German Fishing Federation Leader

Our Fish Response to Reckless Claims by German Fishing Federation Leader

Berlin, 26 October, 2017:- Responding to claims by Peter Breckling, General Secretary of the German Fishing Federation that “in 2019 the cod stocks will be gigantic” in the Baltic Sea, in an article published by German news outlet, Kieler Nachrichten, Our Fish Programme Director Rebecca Hubbard said:

“Mr Breckling’s claims regarding abundant Baltic cod stocks in 2019 are absurd and reckless. One strong year class for western Baltic cod is not evidence that the ‘fishing crisis will be over in 2019’. Baltic cod stocks are still at the second lowest biomass levels since the early 1980s, and are still outside safe limits for repopulating to a healthy state.”

“Western Baltic cod quotas are set far too high to rebuild these iconic fish stocks to healthy levels, with ministers at the recent AGRIFISH meeting agreeing on quotas four times higher than the most cautious advice recommended by fisheries scientists. If the German government continues to listen to fishing industry representatives like Mr Breckling, and making promises that are impossible to deliver on, it risks inducing a collapse of Baltic cod fish stocks instead of rebuilding them, as is required under EU fisheries law”.

“By claiming that more fish need to be caught, because ecosystems cannot feed current stocks, and that fish are being lost because of underfishing, should be seen as evidence that at best Mr Breckling is living in some kind of fishy fantasy world, and at worst misrepresenting the fishing industry, while misleading the German government and consumers.”


‘”2019 ist die Fischerei-Krise überstanden“, Kieler Nachrichten 24/10/2017

2019 wird der Dorschbestand gigantisch sein, sagt Peter Breckling, Generalsekretär des Deutschen Fischereiverbands, voraus. Er plädiert deshalb dafür, die Quote schon im nächsten Jahr zu erhöhen.’

(‘”2019 the fishing crisis is over”

In 2019 the cod stocks will be gigantic, says Peter Breckling, General Secretary of the German Fishing Federation. He therefore advocates increasing the quota already next year.’)


For more information, see the Our Fish press release from October 10:

EU Fisheries Ministers’ All Night Debate Leads To Continued Baltic Overfishing of Cod


Germany’s Blind Spot for Sustainable Fisheries (EN)

Neuer Bericht betont Deutschlands blinden Fleck für nachhaltige Fischerei (DE)


Dave Walsh, Communications Advisor, dave@our.fish +34 691826764

Rebecca Hubbard, Program Director, rebecca@our.fish +34 657669425

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About Our Fish

Our Fish works to ensure European member states implement the Common Fisheries Policy and achieve sustainable fish stocks in European waters.

Our Fish works with organisations and individuals across Europe to deliver a powerful and unwavering message: overfishing must be stopped, and solutions put in place that ensure Europe’s waters are fished sustainably. Our Fish demands that the Common Fisheries Policy be properly enforced, and Europe’s fisheries effectively governed.

Our Fish calls on all EU Member States to set annual fishing limits at sustainable limits based on scientific advice, and to ensure that their fishing fleets prove that they are fishing sustainably, through monitoring and full documentation of their catch.