Eco-label award first for Menai Strait fishery

mussels Products from the fishery can now bear the MSC ecolabel

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A mussel fishery has been awarded the first certificate under a new scheme for businesses which mix natural and farmed methods.

The Marine Stewardship Council award allows four firms in the north Menai Strait - between Anglesey and the north Wales mainland - to use its eco-label.

The award recognises "sustainable and well-managed fisheries".

The firms make up Bangor Mussel Producers Ltd and employ a total of 22 people.

Young mussels are dredged in the Irish Sea and relaid in sheltered beds in the Menai Strait.

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It reflects, very positively, on our long-term commitment to research and the very good working relationships... with fishery managers and the statutory conservation agencies”

End Quote Jamie Wilson Deepdock Ltd

The group won a legal battle earlier this year to prevent a marina being built near part of the mussel beds.

"We are all very proud in the Menai Strait to be the first enhanced fishery to achieve this benchmark certification," said Jamie Wilson of Deepdock Ltd, one of the four firms.

"It reflects, very positively, on our long-term commitment to research and the very good working relationships that we have established with fishery managers and the statutory conservation agencies," he added.

The other companies are Myti Mussels, Extramussel Ltd and Ogwen Mussels Ltd.

In February the mussel fishermen won a high court appeal against controversial plans for a 400-berth £17m marina on Anglesey.

The mussel farmers had claimed the proposed development at Gallows Point, Beaumaris, could reduce the crop by up to 40%.

Landowners Anglesey council and the Crown Estate had appealed against an earlier court ruling arguing that the mussel beds and marina could co-exist.

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