Aquaculture production in English and Wales rivers

Guy Ziv made this Freedom of Information request to Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

The authority would like to / has responded by postal mail to this request.

Dear Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science,

For research purposes, I am looking for information on the total volume (e.g. tons of fish) produced annually in fish farms across England and Wales. There's information online at https://www.gov.uk/fish-shellfish-or-cru... on procedures to request licences for fish farms, but I did not find aggregated production volume data across England and Wales (by species, if possible). Ideally I want such data aggregated to water body scales (as defined by the Water Framework Directive), but otherwise summed up to other spatial scales e.g. principal authorities or NUT3.

Yours faithfully,

Dr. Guy Ziv
School of Geography
University of Leeds

Tim Ellis (Cefas), Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science

Dear Dr Ziv

Cefas publishes annual data on the volumes of different species produced
on fish farms in England and Wales. The data are in tonnes (and by number
for smaller sizes which are sold by number rather than weight). The latest
published figures (for 2012) are available at
[1]https://www.gov.uk/government/publicatio...

The data is collated to meet the requirements of EC Regulations 762/2008
and 199/2008, and is aggregated at a national level. It is not aggregated
to water body or other spatial scales.

Data for previous years have published in Finfish News and Trout News:
[2]http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.u...

Best wishes
Tim Ellis

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Dear Tim Ellis (Cefas),

As evident from going over the links you kindly provided, CEFAS and FHI should have the information on fish volumes at farm level. I appreciate that level of detail is considered commercially classified, which is why I asked for aggregated numbers. However, as the purpose of this request is to check how much WFD status of water bodies or average thereof over sub-catchments, correlate with use of the water for various uses such as aquaculture, a national statistics would not be useful. I would like to know if CEFAS/FHI can release the same information, perhaps for one survey year, at high spatial disaggregation, which is still coarse enough to anonymize individual fish farms.

Yours sincerely,

Dr Guy Ziv

Guy Ziv left an annotation ()

It seems there is a list of Aquaculture sites here http://www.cefas.defra.gov.uk/euregister... but their UK National Grid reference is missing. If these are all the aquaculture facilities in England and Wales, this is what I am looking for - only with location information...
Sincerely,
Guy Ziv

Tim Ellis (Cefas), Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science

Dear Dr Ziv

Apologies for the delayed response - we have not had a similar request
before, and it has taken a while to determine if it is possible.

You are correct that the Cefas FHI holds data on fish production at farm
level. Cefas may be able to provide production data (tonnes and numbers)
aggregated at a level of major river catchment.

Please note that:
- major river catchment is the lowest spatial definition by which Cefas
codes data on fish farm production
- the catchments demarcations were determined for Cefas's internal
epidemiological uses and precede WFD
- data will have to be redacted where commercial confidentiality would be
compromised, either due to limited numbers of farms or where producers of
particular species are identifiable.

Would you still like us to proceed with extracting the data?
Are you interested in production of different species or just total
tonnage and total numbers of juveniles?

Alternatively, it may be possible to provide data by county.

Please let me know, so we can decide how to proceed.

Best wishes
Tim

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Dear Tim Ellis (Cefas),

Can you explain what you refer to as "major river catchment"? If that is the same as WFD river catchments, there are only about 10 in England and Wales together, which is a very poor spatial disaggregation for monitoring possible impact of fish farming on the environment (which is the purpose I ask the data for). There are UK classifications with ~100 catchments within England and Wales (used e.g. in 2nd cycle of WFD) which would be enough. I can send a polygon shapefile (from data.gov) if helpful. For your question - I am interested in total tonnage mainly, but if possible (and easy) to break down to species it would be useful.

Yours sincerely,
Dr Guy Ziv

Tim Ellis (Cefas), Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science

Out of office until 3/07/15.

 

Tim Ellis (Cefas), Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science

1 Attachment

Dear Dr Ziv

Attached is the list of the (178) catchments within the FHI database,
together with those (81) for which there are production entries for 2012.
I have indicated those catchments (13) for which aggregated production
data could be released: this minority reflects the limited numbers of
entries for the majority of catchments.

Do you wish to proceed:
- either by us providing production data for just the 13 highlighted
catchments?
- or by you suggesting an aggregation of catchments (to fit with your
analysis) that may enable production data to be released for a larger
number of (combined) catchments?

Please note that production would be that reported (as tonnage and number
of juveniles) summed across all species. A breakdown by species would
further restrict the number of catchments.

I note that you are interested in assessing the possible impact of fish
farming on the environment. Please bear in mind that total production may
be a poor predictor of pressures on the environment, due to effects of
farm operation, water re-use and water treatment within farms (e.g.
oxygenation, filtration, settlement), as well as characteristics of the
receiving/supplying water body. More appropriate indicators are likely to
be changes in water quality parameters, or abstraction relative to flow
(recognising that fish farms are non-consumptive users of water). I am
sure you are aware that the Environment Agency licences and monitors fish
farm discharges and abstraction.

Best wishes
Tim

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Dear Tim Ellis (Cefas),

Can you send me some contact details to get in touch offline and discuss these data issues?

Yours sincerely,
Dr. Guy Ziv

Tim Ellis (Cefas), Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science

DD: 01305 206706
Tim

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