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DEFRA Allowed to Appeal over Import Levy


UK - Seafish, the authority on seafood, has been granted leave to appeal to the Supreme Court in the matter of Bloomsbury International Limited and others versus Seafish and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs over the right to collect a levy on seafood imports.

Mr Justice Hamblen originally found in favour of Seafish in the High Court, but this decision was overturned by the Court of Appeal.

The announcement means that an appeal against the Court of Appeal’s decision, led by Defra, can now take place. Seafish have been granted permission to intervene in support of Defra’s arguments.

John Rutherford, Chief Executive at Seafish, said: “We are pleased that the Supreme Court has granted us leave to appeal and remain convinced that the grounds for our appeal are sound.

"We are hopeful that this process will eventually lead to the restoration of a levy on imports. In the meantime, we will continue to collect the domestic levy and seek to use it to provide value to the industry.

"We continue discussions with our Government sponsors on the support needed in the interim and on our longer term future."