Belfast Telegraph

Special status of Lough Neagh's pollan to be celebrated

Cathy Chauhan, Lough Neagh Fishermen’s Co-operative Society, Macy Raphael, from Antrim, and Eimear Kearney of Lough Neagh Partnership
Cathy Chauhan, Lough Neagh Fishermen’s Co-operative Society, Macy Raphael, from Antrim, and Eimear Kearney of Lough Neagh Partnership

By Staff Reporter

A fish which is unique to Ireland will be celebrated in a special tribute later this month after winning sought-after Protected Designation of Origin status.

The pollan resembles a freshwater herring but is actually a member of the salmon family.

Lough Neagh pollan bear PDO status, the official recognition awarded by the EU to top-flight foods and drinks - the first for a fin fish in the UK.

As a result, the modest pollan now stands alongside Champagne, Parma ham and Camembert as well as other Northern Ireland delicacies including Comber Earlies, Armagh Bramleys and its close neighbour, the Lough Neagh Eel.

Pat Close, chairman of the Lough Neagh Fisherman's Co-operative Society, the company which holds the fishing rights to Lough Neagh and which is responsible for registering both Lough Neagh Eels and Lough Neagh Pollan, said: "The PDO accreditation is just reward for the fishermen of Lough Neagh who work diligently using sustainable fishing methods to maintain a viable future for the species and the industry."

The pollan will be celebrated at the River to Lough Festival, which will include cookery demonstrations, in Antrim on September 28.

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