Iceland's Langoustine Stocks In Serious Decline - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Iceland’s Langoustine Stocks In Serious Decline

Published February 7, 2019

Andie Fontaine
Photos by
Uuetenava/Wikimedia Commons

Iceland’s langoustine stocks have decreased by 80% between this year and last, according to new data from the Marine And Freshwater Institute (Hafró), RÚV reports. In response, Hafró is recommending reducing or banning entirely the harvesting of langoustine in select areas around the country.

The langoustine population is at a historic low. Last year, a quota of 1,150 tonnes of langoustine was allowed, and this quota has never been lower. Despite this, the quota was not fulfilled, with only 728 tonnes of langoustine harvested. Further, traditional spots around Iceland where langoustines congregate have seen far fewer of them.

As such, Hafró is recommending some drastic cuts be taken. Their recommended quota of langoustine for this year is now 235 tonnes. Furthermore, they recommend banning langoustine fishing altogether in several locations around Iceland; specifically, Lónsdjúp, Jökuldjúp, Breiðamerkurdjúp and Hornafjarðardjúp.

Especially troubling is the fact that this is not a recent trend. As RÚV reported last October, langoustine stocks have been plummeting since 2008. Should the trend continue, a complete ban on langoustine harvesting may come into play, but as yet this has not been raised as an option.

The price of langoustine in Icelandic restaurants can be reliably predicted to increase in the wake of this news.

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