Fish Update Briefing Friday November 27

A LEADING international nutritionist has said that women should not stop eating fish during pregnancy. Dr Emily Oken of Harvard Medical School in the US told a seminar in Dublin, Ireland, that the first thousand days of life – from conception to two years of age – have been identified as a unique ‘window of opportunity’ for nutrition, which can have a major long-term impact on health. Her research has pinpointed the first trimester during pregnancy as the most sensitive period of development. At this stage, the baby was most sensitive to environmental exposures, such as poor nutrient intake and excess weight gain by the mother. The mother’s diet could have an effect on the child’s risk of developing diabetes, heart disease and strokes in later life. Dr Oken said: ‘Our research shows that moderate fish consumption during pregnancy showed no detrimental effects on the offspring and can actually benefit their language and visual motor skills in the early years of life.’
REPORTS that fishing for sea bass may be banned or drastically reduced  by the European Commission next year has brought an angry reaction from Welsh fishermen. Stephen De-Waine, from the West Wales Shellfishermen’s Association, said it would have ‘devastating’ consequences. He has written to Welsh MEPs urging them to campaign against any such ban. In the letter De-Waine says it would not only be a disaster for Welsh fishermen, who rely totally on catching bass for a living, but also for all the fish buyers and businesses which provide fishermen with consumable and non-consumable goods to support their businesses. The European Commission has proposed a complete ban on sea bass fishing for commercial vessels and recreational anglers for the first six months of 2016. For the second half of the year, a one tonne catch limit for boats and a one fish bag limit for recreational anglers was recommended. The commission also proposes to maintain the closure for commercial fishing around Ireland.
DO fish have human-like fingers? A worryingly high proportion of young adults think they do, according to a study by the craft English honey maker Rowse Honey, which found that one if five people aged between 16 and 24 thought that fish fingers were actually what it said on  the packet – made from fingers of fish. They also stumbled over other foods, with some thinking potatoes grew on trees and others were confused over whether honey was made by wasps or bees. One in seven did not know that lamb came from young sheep.Ian Ainsworth, managing director of Rowse Honey, said: ‘Our research shows that as a nation, we’re very naive about where our food comes from.’
BRIDLINGTON Harbour on the Yorkshire coast, home of one of Europe’s most important shellfish fleets, has been awarded £1.2 million to help keep it in top working condition.  The money will be used to finance a 75ft dredger being built at the Ard Maleish shipyard on the Isle of Bute and due to be delivered next summer.The Harbour Commissioners said the dredger was essential to keeping berths and navigation channels clear for fishing. Chris Wright, chairman of the Bridlington Harbour Commissioners, said: ‘The Scarborough dredger that we had in the past was okay, but was a little bit too big for the port and it couldn’t get in to the nooks and crannies where we needed to get to. On this side of the North Sea there’s actually a build-up of nine to 11 inches of mud per year which has to be removed.’