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Chippies face fish crisis

PUBLISHED: 19:00 31 December 2002 | UPDATED: 13:15 03 March 2010

SUFFOLK'S fish and chip lovers could soon find themselves out of pocket because of new laws limiting the amount of cod and haddock that can be caught.

The stern warning came today from two Ipswich chippies in light of the controversial European Union regulations.

SUFFOLK'S fish and chip lovers could soon find themselves out of pocket because of new laws limiting the amount of cod and haddock that can be caught.

The stern warning came today from two Ipswich chippies in light of the controversial European Union regulations.

They also warned the regulations could also test Britain's love affair with its favourite dish as prices look set to soar.

The new EU regulations will see cod catches slashed by 45 per cent from next year, while the haddock catch will be more than halved with whiting catches reduced by nearly two-thirds.

Fishing boats will be limited to 15 days at sea, but only if the fleet agrees to decommission 20pc of its trawlers.

Jason Coates, owner of J's Traditional Fish and Chips Shop, in Cambridge Drive, Ipswich, said: "Prices have gone up already and have been over the past month or so.

"The quotas mean that everyone is after the smaller fish, which is quite worrying.

"I think we'll be ok but I think people will end up eating different fish. I've been in the business 11 years and this is probably the worst time – but then prices always have gone up and down."

Hassan Birisik, owner of Frydays, in Norwich Road, Ipswich, echoed the concerns but rejected fears that the price hike would put fish and chips price out of reach for ordinary families.

He said: "The fish prices always seem to be going up but I think the British people will still eat fish and chips – even if it gets to £5. If people want the quality, they will have to pay for it and I think they will.

"I am not concerned at the moment, but this year has been very quiet. November and December should be very busy but it has not been this year."

The cut to the fishing quota is expected to cost up to 20,000 jobs across the country.

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