Shetland is currently pioneering two innovations in fisheries management. The Shetland Regulating Order and the Community Fish Quota scheme are both certainly innovative, perhaps radical and may possibly become a model for other areas.
The Shetland Islands are often described as remote, barren and peripheral. From a fisheries perspective, however, Shetland is rightly regarded as dynamic and innovative fisheries community of significant regional importance. Fish and fish products account for over 80% of all Shetland exports while some 20% of the work force are employed in the seafood industry.
The first innovation in fisheries management is the Shetland Regulating Order, which has been established to better manage the shellfish industry. The second innovation is the ownership of fish quotas by the wider Shetland community. The fishermen of Shetland, through their two representative organisations (the Shetland Fishermen’s Association (SFA) and the Shetland Fish Producers Organisation Ltd (SFPO)) were responsible for initiating these two innovations and continue to play a central role in managing these developments.
Goodlad, J. Innovations in Fisheries Management: Community Based Management Initiatives in Shetland. In: Microbehavior and Macroresults: Proceedings of the Tenth Biennial Conference of the International Institute of Fisheries Economics and Trade, July 10-14, 2000, Corvallis, Oregon, USA. Compiled by Richard S. Johnston and Ann L. Shriver. International Institute of Fisheries Economics and Trade (IIFET), Corvallis, 2001.