The scientific recommendations for 2023 indicate that this new year’s anchovy TAC will be 33,000 tonnes, most of which goes to the Spanish fleet.
The 29,7000 tonnes of anchovy made available to Spain will be the highest quota since the fishery in the Bay of Biscay was reopened in 2010 – following the 2005-2009 closure due to the stock’s poor overall condition. Since then, there has been a continuous growth in the anchovy biomass, leading to confirmation of the stock’s recovery.
Depending on a renewal of agreements between the Spanish and French fishing sectors, the Spanish fleet can expect a 90% share of the fishery, this year with a deduction of only 180 tonnes due to overfishing of mackerel. This penalty has been applied to the Spanish fleet for some years, and in previous years the deduction had been significantly higher, up to 3696 tonnes in some years.
The strong anchovy situation benefits particularly the coastal purse seine fleets of Cantabria and the north-west of Spain, which target this iconic species from early spring into the summer.