The European Commission has presented an action plan to tackle the main causes of discarding unwanted fish overboard. Discarding is a characteristic of many fisheries, particularly mixed fisheries. Franz Fischler, commissioner for Agriculture, Rural Development and Fisheries, commented: "This practice is even more difficult to justify when so many of our stocks are depleting. The cod crisis illustrates how important it is to tackle discards and protect young fish. This requires action on several fronts. We are proposing measures to prevent catches of unwanted fish and to remove incentives for discarding."