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OIC urges fishing industry to register vessels ahead of Brexit

The environmental health team at Orkney Islands Council is urging local owners to register their fishing vessels and arrange for an inspection as soon as possible.

This applies to all fishing vessels whose catch is destined either directly or indirectly to markets in Europe.

Food Standards Scotland has contacted fishing vessel owners to advise that they need to register as a food business with the environmental health department – and arrange for a vessel inspection – if they, or the businesses they supply, plan to export to any EU Member State at the end of the Brexit Transition Period set for December 31.

Depending on whether an agreed trade deal is in place by the end of the year, all fishery products exported from the UK to the EU may require to be accompanied by an Export Health Certificate (EHC).

The EHC would need to provide the name of the vessel that landed the catch – and certify that the vessel complies with relevant hygiene regulations.

David Brown, OIC’s environmental health manager, said: “The direct link between fishing vessel inspection and export certification makes this an urgent matter for the local fleet.

“Of the estimated 150 fishing vessels operating in Orkney, only 40 have so far registered with us.

“We are writing to owners who have already registered with an appointment for an inspection. These will start to take place from later this month.”

To contact the environmental health team, you can send an email to env.health@orkney.gov.uk

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