Salmon overtakes lobster as highest value catch
May 20, 2021
The NMFS released two annual reports on Thursday, May 20, with statistics on 2019 landings and the status of stocks in 2020. In the 2019 National Fisheries Economic Report, titled “United States Fisheries,” main ports have remained the same.
Dutch Harbor / Unalaska has the largest port by volume (23 consecutive years) with 763 million pounds. New Bedford, Mass., Ranks first for value (20 consecutive years) with $ 451 million.
The Alaska pollock held Dutch Harbor number one in landings. But wild salmon have the big story to tell for 2019, ultimately taking the lead in the most valuable domestic species overall, which is especially noteworthy because they are the only finned fish in the top five.
This year the the report summarizes the top five 2019 landings in value:
- The $ 707 million salmon
- Lobster at $ 668 million
- Crabs at $ 636 million
- Scallops at $ 572 million
- $ 467 million shrimp
Last year, in the 2018 Landings Report, the top five species by value were:
- Lobster at $ 684 million
- $ 645 million crabs
- The $ 598 million salmon
- Scallops at $ 541 million
- $ 496 million shrimp
Unlike Atlantic scallops, which are landed primarily in New Bedford, salmon (like Northeastern lobster) are landed in smaller ports in the region, so their high value is unlikely to grow a single port to that top spot anytime soon.
The other report released today was the “Stock Status” for 2020.
Last year our overfishing and overfishing lists each increased by 1 percent. In 2019, 22 national fisheries (7 percent) were listed as overfishing, and this figure rose to 26 fisheries (8 percent) in 2020. The number for 2020 is still lower than for 2018, while it is was 28 fisheries (9 percent).
It should be noted that the percentage of overfished / overfished stocks reflects the large number of federally monitored fisheries (323 and 251, respectively) and not as a percentage of our landings. In other words, a small fishery counts the same as a large fishery in this report.
And as we must always note, overfishing does not necessarily mean what it entails.
“Despite a historically low level of fishing in recent years, Atlantic herring has been added to the overfished list because, since 2013, reproduction has been steadily declining to historically low levels.” report summary said.
This 20 percent number will undoubtedly be used against the fishing industry, despite the fact that it‘is not exclusively a fishery-based designation.
The federal agency is also working to improve its data collection and understanding of certain fisheries, so new modeling methods or collaborative research may change the state of a stock in one direction or in the future. other.
“The American Samoa and Guam groundfish stock assessments included new information that has changed our understanding of current stock conditions and will now be used to develop reactive management measures,” the summary said.