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Commercial Fishing


Fathoming what seafood means to Cornwall in industry first

Fathoming what seafood means to Cornwall in industry first

Fathom, the commercial fishing podcast – produced by fishermen, for fishermen – has returned to its Cornish roots in its latest episode, unpacking insights from, and considering the potential impacts of a report commissioned by the Cornish Fish Producers Organisation (CFPO) –  ‘Value of Seafood to Cornwall’.

CFPO CEO Chris Ranford has stepped aside from hosting duties, with Charlotte Scotland, also of the CFPO, taking his place in the host’s seat. Chris still features in this episode but as a guest host. Here, he shares his thoughts on why the report was needed:

“The result of the CFPO’s strategic review in 2021 identified four key pillars of work to protect and enhance the Cornish fishing fleet post-Brexit and post-COVID. Since then, we’ve seen a series of small-scale pilot projects aligned with these priorities.

“But to attract the longer-term investment needed to fulfil the full scale of the vision set out in the CFPO’s strategy, we needed to show just how crucial the fishing industry was to the wider economy in Cornwall. This is where our pioneering, industry-first report came in, to evidence that link between fishing, jobs and businesses in the wider Cornish seafood industry and overlapping sectors like tourism and hospitality.”

The episode features economist Jim Plunkett-Cole, who co-authored the report with the former Chief Economist for Seafish, Hazel Curtis, talking through some of the most significant insights gleaned from the report. In particular, Jim highlights the £174 million seafood sector in Cornwall is four times more important to the local economy than to the UK’s; employing around 8,000 people, it means for every fisherman at sea in Cornwall there are 15 more shore-based jobs.

Subsequently, Edd Hind-Ozan, Defra’s Head of Fisheries Social Science, explains how the value evidenced, both in economic terms and to Cornwall’s communities more widely, could be deployed to shape future policies and open up new opportunities for the Cornish fishing fleet.

“This episode is like having a director’s cut of the report.” explains Chris. “It’s not just there to give a blow-by-blow account of what’s in it. Having Jim put the statistics in the report into a wider context, explaining how unique Cornwall’s seafood economy is compared to other counties, with the catching sector fuelling two of Cornwall’s other thriving sectors in tourism and hospitality, will give the contents of the report additional weight in funding and management decisions.”

“But this isn’t contained to Cornwall. Edd’s contributions in showing how this socio-economic evidence will be used to benefit the industry could bring new opportunities to ports across the UK.”

The Fathom Podcast is available to download on Apple Podcasts and Spotify. For all listening options, go to: linktr.ee/fathompodcast, where you’ll also find a link to the ‘Value of Seafood to Cornwall’ report. 

Source Press Release