Written by Linc Bedrosian
Three years after the Deepwater Horizon disaster, the Gulf of Mexico seafood industry is still holding its breath and expecting the worst. After all, sick fish are still turning up off Louisiana. Scientists are still probing potential problems with crabs and shrimp.
"There's still a lot of nervousness," said Bob Jones of the Southeastern Fisheries Association, a commercial fishing trade group based in Tallahassee.
How nervous is the seafood industry? After the Tampa Bay Times ran an article this month on the discovery that the 2010 oil spill caused a mass die-off of microscopic fish in the Gulf, the Gulf Seafood Marketing Coalition offered the reporter an all-expenses-paid trip to New Orleans.
The two-day trip, which the Times declined, was to include free French Quarter seafood restaurant fare in an effort to persuade Americans "that Gulf seafood is not only safe to eat, but one of the healthiest and most delicious choices you can make for your family," explained spokeswoman Amy Noesser Lee.
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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.Read more...
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.Read more...