National Fisherman

The Rudderpost 

jesJes Hathaway is the editor in chief of National Fisherman magazine and


JHathaway2 I know the gulf oil spill has a lot of folks worried about supplies of local seafood and risk of contamination.

While I must admit that if forced to eat farmed shrimp, I'd prefer "freshwater" prawns from Indiana over any product from overseas (for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is the distance Asia-raised seafood has to travel to reach my plate), what I can't stomach is the idea that farmed seafood is inherently safer than wild seafood simply because it's raised in captivity.

According to Indiana shrimp farmer Tim Connor, as quoted in the Indianapolis Star, "With the situation in the gulf, people will want this quality," Tim said. "They know it's safe."

Granted, no one wants to eat oil-contaminated seafood. But the chances that petroleum-marinated shrimp will end up on your shishkebab are slim to none.

Shrimp farmers use pesticides and antibiotics in their "freshwater" ponds. That doesn't sound so fresh to me.

Shrimpers in the gulf are still fishing uncontaminated waters. Get it fresh and wild while you can.

If you happen to be in southern Indiana, find yourself a fried chicken dinner with biscuits, slaw and apple butter. Go local and stick with what you know.

Inside the Industry

NMFS has awarded 16 grants totaling more than $2.5 million as part of its Bycatch Reduction Engineering Program.

The program supports the development of technological solutions and changes in fishing practices designed to minimize bycatch and aims to to find creative approaches and strategies for reducing bycatch, seabird interactions, and post-release mortality in federally managed fisheries.


Abe Williams, who was elected to the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association board last spring, has been selected as the new president as of September.

Williams fishes the F/V Crimson Fury, and is president of Nuna Resources, a nonprofit that supports sustainable resource development in rural Alaska, including fighting for an international solution to issues raised by the proposed Pebble Mine project.

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