National Fisherman


Senator Lisa Murkowski today joined two Senate colleagues in introducing a number of bills that would protect Alaska’s fishing industry from foreign and domestic threats in the form of illegal fishing and Genetically Engineered Fish, including GE salmon known as “Frankenfish.”

“We have scientists splicing fish DNA with an antifreeze-like chemical compound and considering feeding that to Americans,” said Murkowski.  “That kind of idea didn’t work out so well in ‘Jurassic Park’ and I don’t think we should be going down that dangerous road with a perfect natural brain food like salmon.  We also shouldn’t imperil a fishery with an unknown that could create doubts about the entire industry.  All four of these bills are designed to fight the billion dollar threats facing our fish.”

Senator Murkowski joined Senator Mark Begich on two bills. One would make it illegal to sell, possess, transport or purchase GE salmon in the United States unless and until the NOAA approval process makes absolutely sure there is no harmful impact on  the environment – a claim that Murkowski is extremely dubious about, challenging the Food and Drug Administration on the floor of the Senate and through multiple legislative means. (View clips below) The other bill defies the FDA’s stance against clearly labeling Frankenfish, requiring that GE salmon be clearly labeled and identified so that consumers can have full faith in natural salmon and know the difference on grocery shelves so they can be sure they are purchasing the real thing.

Read the full story at Alaska Business Monthly>>

Inside the Industry

NOAA recently published a proposed rule that would implement a traceability plan to help combat IUU fishing. The program would seek to trace the origins of imported seafood by setting up reporting and filing procedures for products entering the U.S.

The traceability program would collect data on harvest, landing, and chain of custody of fish and fish products that have been identified as particularly vulnerable to IUU fishing and fraud.

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The following was released by the Maine Department of Marine Resources on Jan. 22:

The Maine Department of Marine Resources announced an emergency regulation that will support the continued rebuilding effort in Maine’s scallop fishery. The rule, effective January 23, 2016, will close the Muscle Ridge Area near South Thomaston and the Western Penobscot Bay Area.

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