A wide diversity of membership spanning all of the main Scottish fleet segments.
The Scottish Fishermen’s Federation has eight member organisations – its ‘Constituent Associations’. Some of these bodies have memberships drawn from a particular geographical area, while others represent specific fisheries. Together, the Constituent Associations cover all fleet segments and all of the main Scottish fisheries.
The membership of most Constituent Associations is made up of individual vessel skipper/owners, with the Fishing Vessel Agents & Owners Association representing the interests of Scotland’s leading vessel agents, who also have shareholdings in many >10m vessels. Well over 400 vessels are in membership of one of the SFF’s Constituent Associations.
The vessels in membership of our Constituent Associations range from under 10m static gear boats to 70m pelagic trawlers.
For further information on SFF’s Constituent Associations have a read through the paragraphs below:
Anglo Scottish Fishermen’s Association
ASFA represents fishermen, skippers and boat owners in the area between the Rivers Aln and Forth. It has an Executive which meets six times a year and has representatives from all the ports in the area. At least two members must not be skippers or owners. Executive minutes are circulated to the Executive and all skippers.
The earliest known minute book of the Association is dated 6 March 1920, which was a continuation of earlier minute books. During that meeting a letter was considered from “Ferrydene Fishermen’s Fund, appealing for a subscription to defray the expense of getting up petitions and sending a deputation to London to benefit fishermen generally”. The Association contributed £1.
From the minutes of 20 March 1920, a meeting was to be held in Aberdeen on 18 March to set up a Fishermen’s Union. Two delegates were sent at a cost of £6-11s and the Association joined the Union. The Association is represented nationally by the Scottish Fishermen’s Federation, through which it has access to discussions on European and National matters. At a local level, it has direct representation on many bodies and is consulted on matters affecting the Fishing Industry.
The Association has two charities which support fishermen who have accidents and assists their families.
Fife Fishermen’s Association
Based in the East Neuk of Fife, the Fife Fishermen’s Association consists of a diverse fleet of boats involved in prawn trawling, creel, surf clam, scallop and squid fisheries. The Association is committed to a sustainable future for these fisheries. There is a diversity of effort where each sector accommodates the others.
The areas fished by members have become heavily impacted by offshore renewable developments, with traditional fishing grounds lost to this sector. This is, therefore, a key policy focus for FFA alongside the SFF.
Fishing Vessel Agents & Owners (Scotland) Limited
The companies in membership of the Association have been part of the fishing industry for many years going back in most cases to before the second World War and indeed the antecedents of some of the members can be traced back over 100 years. The names of these companies have therefore been well known in the Scottish fishing communities and beyond. Investments in fishing vessels by these companies have generally been in partnership with active fishermen and these arrangements have admirably suited the structure of the Scottish industry and have stood the test of time. This may be due to the fact that many of the companies were founded by individuals who themselves had been active fishermen and succeeding generations of managers have been people enjoying long connections with the industry and with a commitment to its future. Out of that history has evolved the distinct contribution of the Association combining a strong ethos of fellowship with fishermen and their interests, with financial and commercial realism. Perhaps the Association’s previous name (The Salesmen’s Association) was not the best choice, because it gave an entirely false impression of a group of businesses who many thought ‘just sold fish’. The reality is that these companies have major investments not only in the catching sector but in other sectors of the fishing industry, such as processing, chandlery and haulage.
The diversity and scale of investment and activity enables our members to bring a breadth of experience and knowledge to the counsels of the Association and the Federation. Current members of the Association are Denholm Fish-selling Ltd, Don Fishing Co Ltd, Peter & J Johnstone Ltd, LHD Limited & Westward Fishing Company, and between them they act as agent for approximately 150 >10m vessels with shareholdings in half of these. The Association is proud to be a member of the SFF and thus to play its part in defending and promoting the interests of the Scottish fishing industry.
Mallaig and North West Fishermen's Association
Founded in 1947 “to allow fishermen of Mallaig and the North West Coast to make contact with other fishermen and Fisheries Boards and to have a voice in the affairs of the industry”. At that time membership was comprised almost entirely of local herring boats. With the subsequent demise in the 1970s of the West Coast herring fishery, boats in the 40-60 foot size range turned to prawn and whitefish trawling.
The Association has a small full time administration team and is run by elected Directors.
Orkney Fisheries Association
Orkney Fisheries Association is a trade body representing the interests of Orkney's fishing fleet. OFA works closely with fishermen, scientists and other fishing organisations to represent the interests of Orkney's fishing industry, promote sustainable fishing practices and to help improve the knowledge of the marine environment and the species within it.
Our key aims are:
Representing Orkney fishermen in local and national decisions
To prevent the loss of fishing opportunities and grounds within Orkney
Improving the onboard safety of Orkney fishermen
Ensuring the sustainability of Orkney's inshore fisheries
Increasing our knowledge and understanding of fishing stocks and the Orcadian environment
Scottish Pelagic Fishermen's Association Limited
SPFA has been promoting and protecting the interests of the Scottish pelagic fishing fleet since 1932 at national and international level.
The Scottish pelagic fleet remains at the forefront of European pelagic fishing and the primary activity of SPFA is to represent its 22 member vessels at both the political and fisheries management levels, and to ensure a sustainable future for pelagic fisheries. The membership is based at three branches located at Fraserburgh, Peterhead and Shetland.
The sector’s main fisheries are North-East Atlantic mackerel, North Sea, West of Scotland and Atlanto-Scandian herring and Northern blue whiting.
SPFA takes its sustainability responsibilities seriously and is a member of the Scottish Pelagic Sustainability Group which has driven forward a number of sustainability and responsible fishing initiatives since it was established in 2007. These include MSC Certification of North Sea herring.
Through its connections with organisations such as the Scottish Fishermen’s Federation (SFF), North East Fishermen’s Training Association (NEFTA), Shetland Fisheries Training Association (SFTA) and Seafood Scotland, the Association ensures there remains strong emphasis on safety at sea, fishermen’s training and catch quality.
Scottish White Fish Producers Association
Formed in 1943, SWFPA is the largest fishing association in Scotland – and in Europe. We represent around 220 vessels and 1,400 fishermen who contribute a collective £158 million to Scotland’s economy.
We are the political voice of our members. This means we continually speak to our fishermen – hearing their experiences, concerns, and insights – and then relay those messages to policymakers and other relevant industry figures. This helps facilitate a sustainable fishing sector which works for the environment, for consumers, and for the fishermen.
We judge our industry’s wealth not only by its income but also by the health of its resources. That’s why we are always working to improve the way the seas are managed:
Safeguarding the abundance and biodiversity of fish stocks
Providing sensible protection to vulnerable marine ecosystems
Ensuring that responsible husbandry is rewarded
Scottish seafood is truly exceptional, and we want the world to know it. Our various committees support their members and promote their interests both near and far:
Shelf Edge/Faroe Committee
White Fish Committee
Mallaig & North-West Committee
Our members are progressive and at the forefront of innovation within our industry, and it’s our job to represent them to the wider community. Our goal is to create and maintain resilient businesses and long-term stability so that our members can plan and act with confidence.
We do this by listening to and engaging with those who operate within the sector, ensuring their welfare and wellbeing are always a priority.
Shetland Fishermen's Association
SFA promotes the interests of over 100 members, mainly in the political arena: in local government, and in parliament and central government in Edinburgh and London.
It has three sub-committees representing pelagic, white fish and small boat interests, and policy is formulated by an annually-elected executive committee. The SFA chairman and staff are tasked with ensuring the committees have the advice and information they require to make decisions; they also represent the organisation and advance its policies in a wide range of different settings.
The SFA pursues training opportunities for established and prospective fishers at the NAFC Marine Centre in Scalloway and operates a group life assurance scheme on behalf of its members.
The organisation has a well-developed relationship with the Shetland Islands Council. Working together on national bodies and in international organisations, they are able to demonstrate that changes to regulations can have an impact not only on the industry but on the wider community.