MORAY MP Richard Lochhead has welcomed the formation of a new federation to represent creel fisherman along the Scottish coast.
Mr Lochhead said that at a meeting in Inverness last week, creel fishermen from across Scotland agreed to form a new body to represent them.
This organisation will be known as the Scottish Creel Fishermen’s Federation.
Historically, Mr Lochhead said creel fishermen have felt they have been poorly represented.
They therefore agreed to form a group to help them promote fishing practices and secure future supples of creel-caught Scottish shellfish including lobster, crab and langoustine.
Mr Lochhead, who is also Scotland’s fisheries secretary, said: "I welcome the formation of the Scottish Creel Fishermen’s Federation – encompassing inshore fishermen from all around Scotland’s coasts – and look forward to meeting with them soon to discuss the challenges facing our vital creeling sector.
"At the heart of the inshore fisheries strategy we set out at the beginning of this year is a commitment to improve engagement with the static gear sector – our largest fishing fleet.
"Therefore, the creation of this new federation is a welcome step and shows what can be achieved when inshore fishermen come together to speak with one voice."