Michael Creed, Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, has launched a new inshore survey vessel that will monitor and survey mussel bed stocks on the south and east coasts of Ireland.
Commissioned by Ireland’s seafood agency, BIM, T Burke II will operate in Dingle Bay and from Carnsore Point (Co Wexford) to Carlingford (Co Lough).
A side-scan sonar will send sound waves to the seabed to detect the presence or not of mussel seed. The MSC is considered the ‘gold standard’ of fisheries certification and “opens up access for our Irish mussels into the very best markets in the EU and further afield,” he added.
“These surveys form an integral part of the management of the seed mussel fishery which has been awarded the prestigious Marine Stewardship Council sustainability certification,” remarked Minister Creed.
Jim O’Toole, BIM chief executive said the surveys will provide “invaluable data to help drive growth in this important sector and minimise the environmental impact and carbon footprint of the sector.”
Attending the launch were Olivia Moylan Burke, wife of the late Dr Tomás Burke, a technical officer with BIM after whom the boat is named, and her son Lorcán.