i had dinner with my mom a couple of nights ago. she cooked one of my favorite iceland meal. breaded haddock and potatoes. this is served with a wedge of a lemon to squeeze over the haddock and a dollop of remoulade. it takes me back to dinnertime when i was a kid. sitting in the old kitchen, listening to the evening news on the radio and mom and dad preparing dinner.
incidentally, haddock was also the topic in the next day's conversations with two informants. one of them is a captain on a freezer trawler managed by one of the bigger fisheries here. the other one manages his own vessel, a small net trawler, perhaps about a third of the size of a freezer trawler.
the quota for haddock this year is on par with redfish, around 50 thousand tonnes. this amount is exceeded only by the quota for cod; around 119 thousand tonnes. haddock is a go-to fish in most icelandic homes, and it was a nasty surprise to be told by both captains that it appears that the haddock is not doing so well. it might sound selfish, but i would be very sad if i couldn´t continue eating breaded haddock in the future.
the only "official" information i have found on the status of haddock is that greenpeace has placed it on the "seafood red list", meaning that because it is so very commonly eaten, not just in iceland, we need to be mindful of the fisheries we get it from.
that seems reasonable and echoes the concerns of the captains. the cod has been such a focus for preservation efforts, one said, that we've all but forgotten that the haddock needs some TLC as well. it'll be interesting to see what the marine research institute decides for the quota allocation for next year.