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.

"It is important to note that there will be no new reporting requirements for domestic landings of wild-caught seafood," read a statement from NOAA. "Similar information for domestically harvested seafood is already reported under numerous state and federal regulatory requirements."

This proposed rule is designed to build on existing resources and processes—maximizing effectiveness and efficiency, while minimizing impacts on the fishing and seafood trade community, states the release.

NOAA has scheduled two conference calls in February and a public meeting at Seafood Expo North America in Boston on March 7 in order to get feedback on the proposed rules.

The proposed plan can be viewed online.

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Samuel Hill is the former associate editor for National Fisherman. He is a graduate of the University of Southern Maine where he got his start in journalism at the campus’ newspaper, the Free Press. He has also written for the Bangor Daily News, the Outline, Motherboard and other publications about technology and culture.

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