Westminster Food & Nutrition Forum

Since lockdown, we have been organising our full programme of conferences online. We will continue online until further notice, to ensure we play our part in helping our employees and delegates to remain safe during this time. We are pleased that so many key stakeholders, policymakers and other interested parties - both old friends and new delegates - are taking up the opportunity to discuss public policy issues and network at our impartial seminars. New events are coming on to our conference programme all the time. So there are plenty of opportunities for you to join us if you haven’t already, from wherever you are. For booking-related queries, or information on speaking, please email us at info@forumsupport.co.uk or contact us using one of the following numbers: +44 (0)7538736244 / +44 (0)7503591880 / +44 (0)7951044809.
For delegates already booked on, we will send you the online joining instructions (including links, event numbers and passwords) five working days before your conference. If you cannot find these in your inbox please email delegate.relations@forumsupport.co.uk

Next steps for UK fisheries - trade, opportunities, policy, sustainability and support

Morning, Wednesday, 20th January 2021

***Full-scale policy conference taking place online***

This conference will discuss key developments in UK fisheries policy following the end of the EU exit transition period

Delegates will discuss the implementation of the Fisheries Bill as it completes passage through Parliament - and what the future holds for trade, quotas, and domestic fisheries management.

The conference takes place following the end of the transition period and as the UK embarks on its role an independent coastal state.

The discussion is bringing together stakeholders with key policy officials who are due to attend from and DfT.

The agenda:

  • UK fisheries policy and key priorities going forward
  • Developing fair and competitive practices around trade and quotas
  • Strategic priorities for fisheries management across the UK
  • The role of regulation in fisheries and marine life protection
  • Supporting communities and local sustainable fisheries management
  • Implementing sustainable fisheries management and protecting marine life
  • Fisheries within the wider maritime and ports environment
  • Opportunities going forward for UK fisheries and next steps for policy

Relevant developments:

  • the Fisheries Bill - with provisions on fishing rights as the UK leaves EU agreements, conservation, support for the fishing industry and ports, and for the Marine Management Organisation
  • international agreements:
    • UK and Norway sign historic fisheries agreement - including annual agreements on quotas and access to waters for the two countries
    • a further UK agreement with the Faroe Islands, and a bilateral arrangements with Iceland and Greenland
  • The Marine Management Organisation fast-tracks grants to help England’s ports and fishing industry - the MMO inviting applications for grants to help ports or harbours impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and seeking views on managing fisheries in Marine Protection Areas

Key areas for discussion:

  • policy and trade agreements
    • assessing UK-EU trade deal outcomes - what they mean for the future of UK fisheries:
      • the UK fishing industry, and the impact the position with tariffs for fish exports to the EU
      • quotas, total allowable catch (TAC) and access to waters
      • navigating changes that arise from leaving the Common Fisheries Policy
      • options for support for the fishing industry and communities associated with it to adapt to the trading landscape
    • supporting fair trading - how best to determine which fish stocks fall under each territorial water in order to agree and develop the quotas
    • future opportunities:
      • analysing the prospects for the UK as an independent coastal state
      • strategies for UK positioning in international markets and trading relationships going forward
      • what can be learned from the two first agreements with Norway and the Faroe Islands
  • internal UK relationships - the future for strategic coordination between the UK government and devolved administrations:
    • the shape of future joint working, with provisions in the Fisheries Bill for a Joint Fisheries Statement to coordinate fisheries management and planning for sustainable stocks
    • priorities for the UK’s devolved administrations and for equitable sharing of opportunities, benefits and other outcomes of agreements with the EU and more widely
  • sustainable fisheries management
    • the legislative framework - provisions and safeguards in the Fisheries Bill and whether they go far enough, further priorities, and options for addressing concerns over possible loopholes
    • climate-smart fishing - implementation priorities and the impact of the Bill in setting out a plan for protecting marine species
    • international leadership - the UK as a champion in sustainable fisheries policy and practice, and working with other coastal states on sustainability and marine species protection
    • regulation - the role of the Marine Management Organisation as it takes on powers to manage fishing activity and provide advice and guidance on sustainable fisheries
    • support and funding - replacing the EU European Maritime and Fisheries Fund and what social, economic and employment support is most needed by the fishing industry and communities
  • the wider policy environment:
    • levelling-up and green recovery policy agendas - the role of fisheries and how they can be supported going forward to realise benefits and access funding and support
    • innovation - the development of Free Ports and development of the modernisation and digitisation of ports
    • the Government’s Maritime 2050 vision with its ambitions to improve the safety, employment protections and performance of the fishing industry, as well as on addressing environmental and climate challenges

Policy officials attending:

Our forums are known for attracting strong interest from policymakers and stakeholders. Places have been reserved by officials from the Defra and the Department for Transport. Also due to attend are representatives from the High Commission of Canada; Mackinnons Solicitors; The Scottish Association For Marine Science; and Sea Fish Industry Authority.

Overall, we expect speakers and attendees to be a senior and informed group including Members of both Houses of Parliament, senior government officials in this area of public policy, together with other stakeholders concerned with or affected by developments in UK fisheries policy, including food market and supply chain personnel, fisherman and fishery advocacy groups, foreign embassies, conservation authorities, local government, environmental campaigners, members from the wider ports and maritime sector, scientists, academics and researchers, as well as members of the national and trade media.

This is a full-scale conference taking place online***

  • full, four-hour programme including comfort breaks - you’ll also get a full recording to refer back to
  • information-rich discussion involving key policymakers and stakeholders
  • conference materials provided in advance, including speaker biographies
  • speakers presenting via webcam, accompanied by slides if they wish, using the Cisco WebEx professional online conference platform (easy for delegates - we’ll provide full details)
  • opportunities for live delegate questions and comments with all speakers
  • a recording of the addresses, all slides cleared by speakers, and further materials, is made available to all delegates afterwards as a permanent record of the proceedings
  • delegates are able to add their own written comments and articles following the conference, to be distributed to all attendees and more widely
  • networking too - there will be opportunities for delegates to e-meet and interact - we’ll tell you how!

Full information and guidance on how to take part will be sent to delegates before the conference

Keynote Speakers

Barrie Deas

Chief Executive Officer, National Federation of Fishermen's Organisations

Elspeth Macdonald

Chief Executive Officer, Scottish Fisherman’s Federation

Mark Simmonds

Head of Policy and External Affairs, British Ports Association


Peter Aldous MP

Secretary, The All Party Parliamentary Group on Fisheries


James Kane

Associate, Institute for Government

Simen Svenheim

Counsellor for Trade, Industry and Fisheries, Royal Norwegian Embassy in London

Helen McLachlan

Fisheries Programme Manager, WWF

Senior representative confirmed from the Institute of Fisheries Management

Dr Bryce Stewart

Lecturer, Department of Environment and Geography, University of York