Dear [INSERT NAME],
The EU Commission has recently put forward proposals which would prevent members of the public from fishing for bass recreationally during the first half of 2018 or from keeping any bass they catch to eat for the whole of 2018.
It’s clear from these proposals that many thousands of my customers are going to be criminalised for going fishing!
As a significant part of my business is supplying a wide range of tackle and specialist clothing to bass anglers, these proposals, if implemented, will have a very negative impact on my business and the livelihoods of the [INSERT NUMBER] of staff I employ.
The proposals include allowing commercial fishing with hook and line to continue. If bass stocks are in such a perilous state to warrant the denying of access to the public from taking a bass for their dinner, how can ANY commercial harvesting be allowed?
Allowing fishing for profit of any sort to take place whilst simultaneously denying the public from taking a fish to eat flies in the face of natural justice.
I fully understand that controls and restrictions are necessary to ensure sustainability of fish stocks. However, it is the angling sector that for decades has been at the forefront of making representation to a succession of fisheries ministers to introduce measures to ratchet back the harvest levels of bass.
Please ask the Fisheries Minister to ensure that my customers – members of the public simply going angling for the occasional bass – are not banned from doing so. Such a measure which would have very serious consequences for the future of my business and the entire idea that our fish stocks are commonly-owned resources.