Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Part of the problem we all face

This story in yesterday's Daily Telegraph about the holiday-maker at Ilfracombe complaining about the sight of dead fish unloaded by a trawler and describing his children as being traumatized by it all may seem very funny. Well, it is funny and one can only respect the Harbour Master for being so courteous to a man who clearly has no understanding of the most basic facts of life.

This does, however, point to one of the serious problems all food producers, particularly fishermen and meat producers at various stages, face. Though there is a vague good feeling towards the "fishermen of England" (and Scotland, Wales and Ireland) the reality of what is involved is often ignored and pushed out of people's minds. It often clashes with the slightly rosy view of the sea, first developed with the growth of sea-side holidays in the nineteenth century, and disturbs the notion of food just appearing without any unpleasantness. This leads to deliberate ignorance and that, in turn, leads to a paucity of support for the fishing industry in its battle for survival and genuinely sustainable fishing.


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