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VEGA News Item

 
DEFRA Fisheries consultation - 13/11/2003
 
Read our response here
i. We are a research and campaigning organisation with relevant interests described on our website (www.vegaresearch.org) and in our attached correspondence with DEFRA. We call particularly for the marine environment and its denizens and conservation issues to be treated with at least the same regard that these matters receive in the terrestrial context. Precedents can be cited in DEFRA’s current attempts at planning consistency in strategies for Animal Health and Welfare. We might interpret the FSA’s mission to extend from plough-to-plate or stable-to-table to fish-to-dish. We aim at preparing customers for the costs of the depredations and waste in intensified activities systems of fishing and the underlying activities of hunting for food, and for the consequences of pollution and despoliation of the environment. These factors can be included in producing plant foods, such as seaweeds (which could be counted among the daily 5 (plus) fruit and veg).

ii. We believe that policing and enforcement – and especially education – are unequal to the challenges. Advertising and labelling need more rigorous scrutiny.

iii. We recommend policies and education that would remove from civilised life relentless and avoidable rapine on our environment and harm to all species. Planning must be begun, with precedents from other undesirable industries, to hasten these reforms and to develop other forms of endeavour.

iv. Our influence is small but increasing. Public unease and the corresponding attention by the media are undermining confidence in the fishing industry and its lamentable consequences on the environment, food and animal welfare. Apparently salutary recommendations from the Food Standards Agency need warnings about pollutants.

v. Enforcement authorities must exercise more than Principles of Good Regulation: creation of a welcome sea-change in attitudes is needed that can foresee dismantling an evil industry to be replaced by wit and ingenuity in deriving cruelty-free food by harmonious endeavour.

Good Wishes

Dr. Alan Long
 
 
 

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