A member of the cod family, Haddock is a popular fish cooked fresh or traditionally smoked. The meat is firm and white, high in protein and low in fat.
Fishermen report large stocks of Haddock in both the Celtic sea and western channel, but the small amount of quota held by Cornish boats quickly runs out and then restricts fishing massively in Cornish mixed fisheries where it is hard to control what species get caught in a trawl. Always avoid eating undersized fish (below 30 cm) and during their main breeding season in March and April. ICES scientists report reduced stocks of Haddock but levels are still above MSY, however fishing effort is above sustainable levels.
Updated July 2019
Gill nets are lightweight nets made of nylon (monofilament) fishing line that are anchored to the seabed and are used to catch fish by entangling the gills.Learn more
Demersal trawls are large nets that are pulled through the water with the bottom edge of the net touching the seabed. At each edge the net is pulled open by metal ‘trawl doors’. Sometimes referred to as Otter trawling.Learn more
Beam trawls are nets with a steel beam that holds the net open. The belly of the net is made of chains and the upper surface of the net is mesh. Beam trawlers pull two nets along the seabed simultaneously.Learn more
Cornwall Good Seafood Guide rates fish on sustainability using a scale of 1 to 5.
1, 2 and 3 are recommended, Fish to avoid are rated 5.
We use the system devised by the Marine Conservation Society (MCS) so our scores are comparable with the scores produced by MCS for the UK and fisheries from all around the world. For more information on scoring click here.
The stock is currently above sustianable levels (MSY) but fluctuates and has declined in past 2 yearrs. Currently there are still a lot of young fish due to a good year for survival of juvenile fish in 2011 but in the past year the spawning stock biomass has decreased, (although it is still above MSY levels) High levels of discarding of juvenile and unwanted haddock make it hard to estimate effect of fishing on stock sizes. Seafish ecological risk assessment score is 3/5 meaning that there is significant risk for this species. According to ICES fishing effort is currently above recommended levels and has been since 2007, but it is below precautionary advice so the situation could be worse.
This fishery is managed through the EU Common fisheries policy which sets a quota for this species each year. Despite this stocks don’t seem to be re building sufficiently for quotas to be increased despite current good recruitment years. There is no management plan for this species. EU and CIFCA min landing size 30cm.
This simple dish is delicous and easy to prepair. And is best using fresh cornish squid!