Fishing has been an important part of the economy of the United States since its formation. In fact, even before the U.S. won its independence from England, fishing was a part of daily life along most of our coastal communities. Today, the seafood industry in the United States includes not only fishermen themselves, but also the entire infrastructure necessary to provide nutritious seafood from the water to your plate. This includes seafood wholesalers, landing facilities, bait and tackle suppliers, and many other businesses related to catching and distributing seafood, as well as maintaining our vessels and equipment.
Our fishery is mainly comprised of family-owned and operated small businesses. Many of us have been involved in fishing for generations. We are located in coastal communities in the eastern United States with significant historic ties to fishing. For us, fishing is more than a way to earn a living, it is a way of life.
Our most important catch is North Atlantic swordfish. Populations of this apex predator were at diminished levels throughout the 1990s. Today the population is fully recovered and no longer under threat. This was accomplished through international cooperation and great sacrifices by American fishermen and others. To learn more about swordfish, click here.
Our method of harvest is pelagic longlining. This fishing method has been used for decades around the globe, due to its ability to target desired species while minimizing impacts on marine habitat. At its core, longline fishing is a baited hook-and-line fishery. This enables our fishermen to process and handle each fish one-at-a-time, which ensures its high-quality. Click here to learn more about pelagic longlining.
Because we target swordfish, which is a highly-migratory species of fish, we are subject to management at the international, federal, and state/local levels. Regulations control everything from how much fish we can catch and where we can catch it to how much horsepower we can add to an engine upgrade. Regulations also are in place to ensure the safe handling and storage of our catch as well as requirements to use best practices to prevent harm to sea turtles and other marine life. To learn more about how our fishery is managed, please click here.