Connecting with industry and members in SA
I am in Cape Town, South Africa at the moment and made use of the opportunity to visit the South African Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries where I met up with the Assistant Director: Pelagic & High Seas Fisheries Management, Johan de Goede. He gave a brief overview of the Marine Resources Management system for pelagics which is based on bi-annual scientific recuitment surveys. The South African anchovy biomass has been exceptionally large this year (a similar size was last seen in the 1980s) and in contrast the sardine biomass is very small resulting in only limited quotas. Mr de Goede also explained that the South African government is actively encouraging the use of anchovy for direct human consumption and has undertaken various projects to support this.
Lucky Star, Oceana (Mike Copeland: Director; Salie Suleiman: Managing Director; Stephan Nel: Sales and Marketing Executive; Kevin Changoo: Technical Director) kindly took me for lunch. This is a great opportunity to meet up with members and hear about current concerns and issues that they have to deal with and also to update members on any developments that are of interest to them. One of the issues which could affect the industry's current fishing alllocations is the Fishing Rights Allocation Process (FRAP) that is currently considered. One of the main objectives is to promote transformation through allocation of fishing rights to historically disadvantaged persons which shall include designated groups (youth, women and people with disabilities), broaden meaningful participation (increase participation, value-creation, and linkage). Rights to operate fish processing establishments will be granted for a period of 15 years.
I hope to have the opportunity to meet up with more of our South African members while in beautiful Cape Town.