Hudghton (Greens/EFA) draftsman of the opinion of the Committee on Fisheries. - Mr President, on behalf of the Committee on Fisheries I welcome the proposal wholeheartedly. Whilst doing so I stress that it is imperative that the specific characteristics of the fisheries and the aquaculture sectors are taken into account. These sectors present quite different questions from the general food industry categories and the challenges raised by recent problems in fisheries, including infectious salmon anaemia, amnesic shellfish poisoning and dioxins, require industry-specific measures. Moreover, adequate consideration must be given to the special needs of the peripheral communities, such as those in Scotland and other fishing nations which fisheries support. That is why the Committee on Fisheries supported my amendment introducing a new recital on traceability. The very nature of fisheries has implications for traceability. There are numerous potential difficulties which the Commission must ensure are catered for, taking into account different methods of catch, where fish are caught, where they are landed and also problems associated with black fish. In addition, I felt it was essential that the composition of the management board ensures a balanced representation of expertise covering all relevant sectors involved in food production, distribution and animal feed and including, in particular, fisheries. It is regrettable that neither of these priorities were taken on board by the committee responsible. I would urge the Commissioner to take them into account. Please note that I am not suggesting increasing the size or changing the method of appointing the board, merely that the relevant expertise should be included. I welcome, however, amendments which follow the gist of my opinion, redefining the definitions of food unfit for human consumption and contaminated food in Amendments Nos 43 and 44, as they are more in line with the policy the Commission has pursued in the wake of the outbreak of infectious salmon anaemia.
Finally, the Fisheries Committee endorsed Amendments Nos 35 and 51, which take into account the distinct needs of the aquaculture sectors and, in particular, the amendments that address concerns which have been voiced about the development of genetically modified fish, to prevent them from entering the food chain through the back door via third-country imports. I would therefore urge the House to support these amendments.

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