The Future of American Fisheries


As policymakers continue to discuss the Magnuson-Stevens Fisheries Management and Conservation Act reauthorization and the future of American fisheries, coastal communities are calling for action to meet the needs of an evolving industry. While we are seeing a growing demand for seafood, the U.S. imports 85% of our seafood while exporting a vast majority of our "American catch," resulting in a $10.4 billion seafood trade deficit. With the demand at home, how are we sending our American catch abroad while importing from around the world?

By fostering community-supported fisheries and developing aquaculture alternatives and underutilized fisheries, entrepreneurs are creating businesses, using innovative strategies, and forming new partnerships that connect communities to their local fisheries while providing high quality and high value sustainable seafood. From sea to supper, fishermen, processors, grocers, restaurateurs and top chefs ensure fresh fish from sound sources reach our plates. The recreational fishing community has grown to encompass millions of anglers contributing to a multi-billion dollar industry. And while many anglers contribute as on-the-water stewards individually, there is the aggregate impact of this sector’s collective actions to consider. As we look to the future of our American fisheries, management will need to adapt to meet the needs of a growing and changing marine fishing community.



Michael Conathan, Director, Ocean Policy, Center for American Progress


Chris Brown, President, Seafood Harvesters of America

John Connelly, President, National Fisheries Institute

George Cooper, Senior Vice President, Forbes-Tate

Barton Seaver, Chef and Program Director, Healthy and Sustainable Food Program at Harvard School of Public Health’s Center for Health and the Global Environment

Eileen Sobeck, Assistant Administrator, NOAA National Marine Fisheries Service

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