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Your right to fish for food

Your Right to Fish for Food

by the option team


An over-arching representative body

Creating an over-arching body to represent marine amateur fishing interests has been the topic of hot discussion lately. A number of possible options have been discussed, including the possibility of smart-cards, membership or licence fees. Follow the process and read the meeting reports here.......


Access issues

Higham Road Kaipara - proposed paper road closure

option4 Principles

option4.co.nz representatives are not negotiable on the following principles and will demand the following on behalf of all the non-commercial fishers we represent.


To carry the four principles of option4 all the way through the rights redefinition process and to have those principles enshrined in legislation.


  1. A priority right over commercial fishers for free access to a reasonable daily bag-limit to be written into legislation.
  2. The ability to exclude commercial methods that deplete recreationally important areas.
  3. The ability to devise plans to ensure future generations enjoy the same or better quality of rights while preventing fish conserved for recreational use being given to the commercial sector.
  4. No licensing of recreational fishers.

Moyle's Promise

In 1989 the National Policy for Marine Recreational Fishing was finalised and the Minister of Fisheries, Colin Moyle, issued the following statement that is referred to today as Moyle's Promise,

"Government's position is clear, where a species of fish is not sufficiently abundant to support both commercial and non-commercial fishing, preference will be given to non-commercial fishing.

option4 believe the 1996 rewrite of the Fisheries Act confirmed this priority access. Section 21 clearly states the Minister shall "allow for" non-commercial fishing interests, both recreational and customary, before setting commercial quotas .

No compromise

option4.co.nz will not let them compromise your rights to fish and gather seafood.

option4.co.nz will not sell out the rights of future New Zealanders to a reasonable daily bag limit.

option4.co.nz will not let the public of New Zealand become a minor shareholder in a commercially run fishery.

The redefinition of recreational fishing rights must include the following:

  • The recreational share must provide individual access to a reasonable daily bag limit within sustainable limits. The recreational share must vary to accommodate inevitable growth in recreational fishing as the population increases.
  • The recreational share must be insulated from being adversely affected by the behaviour of any other sector. Recreational fishers must be able to formulate plans to achieve the objective of enhancing and protecting recreational rights, quality of fishing and the level of stock required to achieve these two objectives. If these plans cannot be done co- operatively with other users, then they must be able to be done on an individual user group basis. A mechanism for protecting fish conserved by recreational fishers must be developed to prevent other users from plundering recreationally conserved fish under such plans.
  • An area right to create non-commercial only or non-commercially controlled fishing areas similar to the Mataitai and Taiapure Maori fisheries management tools.



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