The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) is developing a National Blue Cod Strategy, and to do this we want people to tell us what's happening with blue cod in their area.
MPI Inshore Fisheries Manager Steve Halley says blue cod is a very important species.
"It supports a high-value commercial fishery, a high participation recreational fishery, is taonga to tangata whenua, and it's considered a top table fish by many consumers."
"The unique biology of blue cod, together with its popularity, makes it particularly vulnerable to overfishing and localised depletion. A changing inshore environment has also had a direct impact on blue cod fisheries."
"MPI is developing the strategy to take action to get in front of any problems facing the fishery, in order to ensure this iconic species remains sustainable and abundant for all New Zealanders."
"We want to get this strategy right, and to do that we need people to get involved and let us know what's happening in their local blue cod fishery."
"We want to engage widely with the public to ensure we capture all the issues and potential solutions. Information provided by the public will be used to inform and guide experts in assembling a robust and useful strategy."
"The importance of the species and the fishery is reflected in the process we are going to follow to develop the strategy."
MPI and recreational and commercial fishing experts, tangata whenua and scientists met at a workshop in early July to begin developing the strategy. We now want the public's opinion on what the experts have developed so far and what people think about their local blue cod fishery.
To do this, MPI is holding 8 information sessions around the South Island in early September and providing an online survey on our webpage.
"It's important everyone shares their views on what's happening in their blue cod fishery with us. Whether you're a recreational fisher, commercial fisher, iwi, or simply interested in blue cod – we want to hear from you."
Information gathered from the information sessions and the first online survey will be used to guide the development of potential solutions during a second expert workshop.
MPI will then seek wider public feedback on the proposed solutions, prior to the strategy being finalised.