Lower King Crab quotas in 2019

King CrabCatch of the coveted King Crab. Until recently deemed as an unwanted species in Norwegian waters, before becoming a lucrative resource. Photo: Havforskningsinstittutet

Lower Norwegian King Crab quotas in 2019

The total Norwegian quota for male King Crabs has been set at 1400 tonnes for 2019. This is a decrease of 350 tonnes from 2018. The Ministry of Fisheries simultaneously warns of tighter control of the industry.



– In recent years we have had a very high degree of harvesting of King Crab. Now the researchers say that if this continues, it will lead to a collapse of the stock. That will not happen. We will continue to make good use of the King Crab, it is in our management regime, but we must also manage sustainably, according to the Norwegian Minister of Fisheries, Harald T. Nesvik (Progress Party).

For female King Crabs, the quota is set at 100 tonnes, which is the same as in 2018. The minimum size of 130 mm shell length for males is continued, while the minimum size for females is increased to 130 mm shell length in order to avoid negative consequences for an increase in the stock. The quotas apply to the regulated area east of 26 ° E in Finnmark.

The Directorate of Fisheries has recently consulted on the regulations for fishing for King Crab in 2019 and final regulations for this fishery are set before the turn of the year.

Wants to put an end to cheating

In order to contribute to less hanky-panky, better animal welfare and better food safety, the Ministry of Trade and Fisheries has adopted amendments to the regulations regarding the harvest of King Crab, the Ministry informs in a press release.

– Catch of King Crab takes place over large areas, which are difficult to control. Unfortunately, we know that King Crab is sold on the black market. There have also been reports of poor hygiene and breaches of animal welfare. Therefore, there will now be a tightening of the control,  Fisheries Minister Harald T. Nesvik states.

The changes entail measures that will strengthen the control of sales of King Crab, while at the same time increasing the turnover requirement for obtaining a full quota.

Further tightenings are to be expected, including stricter requirements for the purchase and sale of King Crabs from cars or stalls. As of May 1st, 2019, such purchasing stations must be approved by the Norwegian Food Safety Authority.

New requirements are also introduced for the use of crab pots. The requirements include rules for the design of assemblies, new husbandry requirements and tracking equipment on the traps. Nor will it be allowed to store more King Crabs than the vessel’s quota in the pots, or transport the crustaceans in them.

For a long time, it has been announced that the income requirement for a full quota will increase. According to the Minister of Fisheries, fishermen, as of January 1st 2019, will have to catch other species for more than NOK 200,000 in sales value to obtain the full quota for King Crab.


© NFD / NTB scanpix / #Norway Today