Irish Hake FIP Workplan

This Fishery Improvement Project is focused on Irish fisheries for hake which is an important species for the Irish fishing industry.

Hake landings of these species are valued at around €9 million. According to the latest scientific advice the Hake stock in Irish waters is at historically high levels.


Hake FIP work plan April 2020 – March 2021

Fishery: Demersal trawl and seine fishery in ICES Areas VI & VII 

Fleet: Irish registered vessels fishing for Hake with demersal trawls and seines.

A pre-assessment report under the Marine Stewardship Council Principles and Criteria for Sustainable Fishing was conducted in August 2018 which covered the trawl fisheries for hake, monkfish and megrim together.   

The pre-assessment concluded that the status of the Hake stock is very healthy. The pre-assessment report found that there are issues with the TAC being set at a higher level than scientific advice, that knowledge of stock status for some primary and secondary species was lacking and that specific fishery objectives should be developed.


P1: Stock Management

The Hake stock in ICES Area VI and VII is part of the Northern Hake stock as assessed by ICES. The most recent ICES advice on this stock describes the stock as being at close to historically high levels and significantly above MSY levels while fishing pressure has been below FMSY since 2012.Despite the healthy stock status the assessment for the stock is quite uncertain according to ICES. 



  • To work with Marine Institute scientists to reduce uncertainty in the stock assessment and to improve the data available for management and decision making.


  • Identify, in collaboration with Marine Institute scientists, the main shortcomings with the assessment.  

    2. P2 Environment:

    The main issue highlighted under Principle 2 is related to whether white-bellied angler fails the secondary species criteria.


    To improve the knowledge of whether white-bellied angler fails the secondary species criteria under PI 2.2.1. 




      • To carry out a detailed and updated risk assessment, in collaboration with the Marine Institute, for white-bellied angler to assess if it passes the secondary species criteria for PI 2.2.1.

    3. P3 Management System

     The pre-assessment report highlighted a lack of fishery specific objectives consistent with achieving P1 and P2 outcomes.



    To define fishery specific management objectives for the Irish Hake FIP.



    • Create a shortlist of fishery specific management objectives and discuss at FIP meetings and with Marine Institute scientists.
    • Agree on a set of management objectives for the fishery that FIP members will be bound by.