I am neither a commercial or recreational fisher, but as someone who enjoys eating fish I have been following the debates regarding halibut allocations.
Much of the information out there seems biased and misdirecting.
The split 85 per cent commercial and 15 per cent recreational is a three per cent change overall.
Previously the split was 88/12.
However, it actually represents a 25 per cent increase of the recreational sector’s total allowable catch.
And this increase is not enough? Imagine a 25 percent gift increase in your salary. Woohoo!
So there are 100,000 recreational halibut fishermen in Canada, but what about the other 30 million people, like myself, who can’t afford a boat, or an $800 per day charter trip?
Recreational fishing is an elitist sport.
What most of us Canadians can afford, and appreciate, is the opportunity to buy halibut from the store or at a restaurant.
The halibut I eat is provided by the hard working commercial sector.
I disagree with the taking of quota from the commercial fishermen, who make a living fishing and feed the masses with their catch.
The recreational fishermen are doing it for a hobby, and have overfished their total allowable catch year after year.
This year it was 270,000 pounds over without repercussions.
The most important thing is responsibility and conservation of the resource so we can all enjoy halibut in the future.