Mar 25 2011

Fisheries chief sees end to overfishing

March 22, 2011


By Richard Gaines Staff Writer

The administrator of federal fisheries has reportedly declared restoration efforts of overfished stocks — now in their fourth decade under Magnuson-Stevens Act mandates — have succeeded in making sustainable the nation’s last great wild food resource.

In informal remarks during a private meeting with a seafood marketing group on the first day of the International Boston Seafood Show, Eric Schwaab, administrator of the National Marine Fisheries Service, was applauded not only for his optimistic assessment of the long struggle to end overfishing, but for his commitment to marry government resources with U.S. industry efforts at increasing the domestic share of the global seafood market, according to multiple audience sources.

Handling Samplesphoto © 2010 Deepwater Horizon Response | more info (via: Wylio)

Schwaab spoke to about 70 members of the National Seafood Marketing Coalition on Sunday, during the first day of the three-day seafood show, considered an apex event on the global fisheries calendar.

Expressed in multiple variations, the theme of the show, according to Seafood.com, an industry news site, was supplier and seller efforts to measure and demonstrate seafood sustainability in a global market in which 84 percent of U.S. consumption is imported, half of it farmed.

The leading exporter to U.S. markets is China, to which the United States had a $1.6 billion trade deficit in seafood alone in 2010, according to government statistics.

Schwaab’s characterization of the success of stock restoration efforts in the United States intersects the pending Senate confirmation hearing as ambassador to China of Gary Locke.

Locke, the Secretary of Commerce, has become the center of a festering dispute between coastal state congressional leaders and the White House over administration fisheries policy, and whether the conversion to catch share management and a commodities market system has caused grave harm to the industry and fishing communities, as U.S. Sens. John Kerry, Scott Brown and Congressmen John Tierney and Barney Frank, all of Massachusetts, and other lawmakers have argued.

Read the rest of the story from the Gloucester Times.

 

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