25 Jan The Fishermen’s Guild of Ibiza and Formentera celebrates 100 years
Since last May, the first centenary of the Fishermen’s Guild of Ibiza and Formentera is being celebrated, whose members we have to thank for the extraordinary genre that we use as the basis for our seafood dishes.
This entity, which began as Pósito de Pescadores, was the first association formed by professionals from the guild. Its purpose was to bring together all the fishing production of its members to market and distribute it in an orderly manner, avoiding unfair competition and setting guidelines to avoid overexploitation of fishing grounds.
The old Pósito, which was located on the old pier, next to the shelter dam that ends Avenida de los Andenes, was born on June 18, 1922 with 71 members. There, in the old building that is still preserved and that in the near future will be transformed into the first Sea Museum on the island, the fishermen even had their own school, where their children were trained with such notable teachers as Antoni Albert i Nieto, who also served as secretary of the entity before the Civil War.
During all these years, the organization has operated without auctions, self-regulating fish prices, which has made it easier for the Ibizan sea not to be overexploited. Over the years, the brotherhood was divided into three headquarters: Ibiza, Sant Antoni and Formentera, located in its ports. The one in Ibiza is located today on Avinguda de Santa Eulària, near the Club Náutico Ibiza and the maritime station of the boats of Formentera.
Throughout this century, fishermen have lost companions and boats and have faced very difficult times, especially due to the presence of trawlers and tuna boats from other latitudes, which have not only destroyed their arts on countless occasions, but have also dedicated themselves to shearing the coast. After decades of negotiations, the situation appears to have stabilized. Fishermen have also been lamenting the presence of poachers for decades and currently face the challenge of generational renewal and the limitation of their activity by different European regulations, which, according to them, make some types of fishing unfeasible, such as the small-scale trawling that takes place in Ibiza, without which the high demand that exists on the island cannot be met.
Over the years, fishermen, who have always worked in an artisanal way, with the same arts of their ancestors, have also exercised an important work related to sustainability, proposing and promoting the creation of marine reserves where fish can reproduce for months without anyone being able to go fishing for it. Your work is commendable and from Es Torrent we toast to your future and congratulate you for getting so far.