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The SWHFA was set-up over 20 years ago to represent the many handline mackerel fishermen that were working from South West. At that time the fishery was being threatened by large Scottish and Russian trawlers taking large schools of fish within miles of the Cornish Coast. Today, most of the Association’s members are still active handline mackerel fishermen, but many members also fish for Bass, Pollack and Squid using handlines.

The Association has worked with the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) and as a result the South West Handline mackerel fishery was the 2nd MSC accredited fishery in the UK.