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Blue Crab: 1 mln euro compensation for fish farmers

Emilia-Romagna Region: 'Still no feedback from the government on possible national emergency

17, Sep 2023

In recent days the Emilia-Romagna Region has once again requested the Ministry of Agriculture to obtain authorization to use the fishing tool called "ostreghero", and deal with the serious situation in the Sacca di Goro and the coastal areas of the Municipality of Comacchio. The request is dictated by the need to urgently and quickly combat the continuous proliferation of the blue crab within aquaculture sites and in the immediately surrounding areas.

“We are still waiting to receive a response from the government to the Region's request to declare a national emergency for the blue crab plague which has affected the fishermen and aquaculturists of Goro and Comacchio – recalled the councilor for agriculture Alessio Mammi - In the meantime, the proliferation of the crab has also reached other areas of the coast. For our part, we have made 1 million euros available to compensate aquaculture farmers affected by the blue crab emergency, an important signal of attention for those who have suffered damage in their daily work at sea".

The "ostreghero" is a funnel-shaped fishing tool, which is held open by an iron pole. In the lower part there are leads that rake the sandy bottom.
The possibility of using it as a "defense weapon" against the blue crab has been requested several times by fishing associations. Furthermore, ostreghero is already authorized in state-owned maritime areas of the Veneto region, subject to the internal waters regime.

In 2023, throughout the Po Delta and as regards Emilia-Romagna in the municipalities of Goro and Comacchio in the province of Ferrara, there was a massive proliferation of blue crab (Callinectes Sapidus), an alien species native to the Atlantic Ocean which, without natural antagonists in our seas, is invading the Adriatic and proceeding with the systematic destruction of the marine ecosystem. This species has proven to be particularly aggressive towards the aquaculture farms present in the Sacca di Goro and in the Comacchio canals, natural environments where approximately 16 thousand tonnes of clams are produced annually (55% of Italian production and 40% of European).

"To date, the Emilia-Romagna Region has not yet received a response regarding the national emergency request made by the President of the Region Stefano Bonaccini last August, to recognize adequate faculties and financial instruments for local administrations to proceed with the disposal of crabs and compensation to businesses - we read in a note from the regional council - The Emilia-Romagna Region has also asked for a more structured strategy to combat the blue crab at a national level, also through the technical table established by the ministry with the Regions, the associations representing fishing cooperatives and the main national institutes" (read EFA News).

lml - 34353
Bologna, BO, Italy, 15/09/2023 15:01
EFA News - European Food Agency

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