As of January 2016 a new ministry, the Ministry of Maritime Economy and Inland Navigation, is responsible for the fisheries and aquaculture sector in Poland. Aina Afanasjeva, Director of Eurofish, and Behnan Thomas, editor of Eurofish Magazine, met Janusz Wrona, the newly appointed director of the Fisheries Department and his team to discuss the most recent developments and future plans for the Polish fisheries and aquaculture sector. Among the issues discussed were the role and importance of the Baltfish regional forum which Poland led from July 2015 to June 2016. The insufficient availability of cod in the Baltic sea was one of the issues that Poland prioritised during its presidency and will continue to focus on in the months to come. The sustainability of fisheries in the Baltic is a priority for Poland, but the director noted that increasing costs for certification were making it difficult for fishing companies to invest in having fisheries assessed to sustainable standards.
Polish aquaculture continues to be dominated by carp and trout, however, Mr Wrona added that Poland was taking measures to diversify species and to add greater value to its production, dedicating resources to salmon farming, as well as to increasing caviar production. Poland today is the fourth largest producer of caviar in Europe. While acknowledging that there were a number of issues to address within the fisheries and aquaculture sector, the director said that innovation and diversification would be critical to ensuring the continued and sustainable development of the sector. The meeting also discussed the upcoming feature on Poland in Eurofish Magazine and collaboration opportunities, such as the organisation of workshops and conferences on trade and markets, as well as the translation of the guide to recirculation aquaculture technologies into Polish.