Mon. Dec 5 2016

China Temporarily Halts Live Dungeness Crab From California in Response to Domoic Acid Reports   (1) 


Hawaii Crew Rights Defender Slams AP News For Failing to Follow Up on Hawaii Industry Initiatives


Record Prices and Global Demand for Chilean Sea Bass Lead Importers to Worry Market Share  


Southern Oregon Dungeness Crab Test Safe Prior to Discussion on Opening Dates  


PODCAST: Oregon and Washington's Dungeness Season Delayed and Alaska's Pollock Biomass Reported


Murray, Cantwell Push to Declare Six Fisheries Disasters in Washington State  


China's CAPMA Establishes Catfish Institute to Support Expansion, Including in Domestic Market  


Competing Proteins: Modest Gains for Red Meat Markets Last Week


Buyback Completed in Alaska Golden King Crab Fishery; NMFS to No Longer Collect Buyback Fee  


Seafood.com News Summary Monday December 5, 2016


Fri. Dec 2 2016

Don't Give Up on Snow Crab: 2017 Data Says Canadian Volumes Will Come Roaring Back  


California Opens 50-mile Stretch to Dungeness Crabbing; Oregon Test Results Trickle In  


Russian King Crab Enters MSC Assessment After Passing Preliminary Review  


MSC Retreats from Transparency, Makes it More Difficult to See Updates on Fisheries in Assessment


As Expected, Hokkaido Scallop Landings fall to 21 year low  


Oceana Sues NMFS Over 25,000-mt West Coast Anchovy Limit


Seafood.com News Summary Friday December 2, 2016


Thu. Dec 1 2016

Russian Salmon Catches Exceed 420,000 Tons This Year, 4th Largest Volume Since 2000  


Labor Shortages, High Density and Small Size, Plague Shandong Scallop Harvest  


Processors in China Cutting Prices on Tilapia Purchases as Farmers Clear Ponds Before Cold Weather  


NOAA Pre-season 2017 Harvest Forecast for SE AK Pinks is Up From ADF&G's at 46.2 M  


Sea Pact Awards Four More Seafood Research Projects with Annual Grant Funding


Poland’s Fish Production, Consumption on the Rise with More Herring, Smoked Salmon


Southstream Seafoods Becomes Exclusive Importer of Ocean Fish's Frozen, Farm Raised Cobia


ISSF Calls for Continued Cuts to Bigeye Landings, Reduction in FADs in Pacific


Tropical Aquaculture's Colombian Tilapia Producer Piscícola El Rosario Gets Two-Star BAP Approval


Seafood.com News Summary Thursday December 1, 2016


Wed. Nov 30 2016

Ecosystem Reports at Council Point to Possible Future Declines in Pollock, Cod after some Good Years  


Sluggish Demand Weighs on Ecuador's US Shrimp Sales  


Maine Diver Scallop Season Opens; Restaurants Take Note  


China Fishery Trustee Agrees to Terms to Keep Peruvian Assets Afloat During Bankruptcy Proceedings


Canada's Bay of Fundy Herring Fishery Gets MSC Certified


Halibut Stock Holding Steady but Some Catches For 2017 Could Decline  


Three More Plead Guilty to Elver Trafficking as Part of DOJ's Multi-State Investigation


Subway Joins International Pole & Line Foundation in Support of Responsibly Harvested Tuna


Seafood.com News Summary Wednesday November 30, 2016


Tue. Nov 29 2016

California Crabbers and Processors Settle for $3 Per Pound; Season Opens to Rough Weather  


Tsukiji Wholesalers May Face Y 4 Billion Annual Losses from Botched Move


Nova Scotia Lobster Season Opens with First Haul Back at Midnight Tonight  


Biggest Russian Quota Holder Karat Plans $250 Mln investment in Barents Sea and Distant Water Fleets  


Seafood Sales Reported Excellent Through China's Online Sellers on Singles Day


Seafood Suppliers, Retailers ask WCPFC to Set Interim Harvest Reference Points for Tuna and By-catch


White Shrimp Prices Stable in China; Mostly 50 count (30-35 headless) Available for Domestic Market  


PODCAST: Octopus Imports and Prices; Gulf Shrimp Landings and Seafood News Commodity Newsletters  


Marine Conservation Alliance Releases "Principles of Sustainability" Website


Handy Voluntarily Recalls Mini Crab Cakes Distributed to Whole Foods for Undeclared Allergens   (1) 


Cargill Successfully Replaces Fish Oil With Omega-3 Rich Canola in Tests on Chilean Salmon


North Carolina Fisherman Pleads Guilty to Illegal Harvest, Sale of Atlantic Striped Bass


Seafood.com News Summary Tuesday November 29, 2016


Mon. Nov 28 2016

Seafood.com News Summary Monday November 28, 2016


Jump in Alaska Pollock Biomass Should Have Little Impact Say Sellers, Because of 2 Mln ton Cap  


SIRF Funds DNA Testing Project for Fast Identification of Fish Species


Uncertainty over Prices As SW Nova Scotia Lobster Season Opens This Week  


China Bigfoots Pangasius Market, Output, Prices Rise, China to be Vietnam's Top Buyer within a Year  


California Opens More Areas to Dungeness Crabbing; Others Remain Closed  


2016 ICCAT Meeting Combats IUU Fishing, but Fails to Protect Young Bigeye or Yellowfin Tuna  


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China Temporarily Halts Live Dungeness Crab From California in Response to Domoic Acid Reports

SEAFOODNEWS.COM by John Sackton and Amy Zhong  Dec 5, 2016

China's ASIQS which is responsible for Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine of goods coming into China, last week suspended all inspections and approvals for live Dungeness Crab from California to enter China.  However, over the weekend they have again begun accepting crab from California, after the USDC assured them the crab was being tested.  However, several loads were dumped due to the imposition of a quarantine.  
 
For crab that is accepted, if they do a domoic acid test, it takes 2-3 days, which is a further stressor on live crab.  
 
Last week they revoked licenses already issued. INdustry..

Full Story »

Hawaii Crew Rights Defender Slams AP News For Failing to Follow Up on Hawaii Industry Initiatives

 

SEAFOODNEWS.COM by John Sackton - December 5, 2016

AP created a wave of concern among buyers around the globe when they reported that foreign workers on some Hawaiian longliners were being trafficked and exploited. Some companies temporarily stopped purchasing fish on the Hawaii auction.
 
The auction itself took immediate steps to require full registration and tracking of crew payments on all vessels selling on the auction.
 
At the same time, a number of other steps were taken to verify the status of foreign contract workers on Hawaiian ships, and in particular to uncover potentials for abuse and trafficking.
 
Now, some of the global leaders asking for respect for crew are calling on the AP to update its reporting with the facts about Hawaiian seafood, and the steps taken to combat slavery. Yet so far, the AP organization has not reported on the fleet’s efforts.
 
Katrina Nakamura, a research scientist who runs a company called Sustainability Incubator offering the Labor Safe Screen...
 

Full Story »

Record Prices and Global Demand for Chilean Sea Bass Lead Importers to Worry Market Share

SEAFOODNEWS.COM by Michael Ramsingh - December 5, 2016

With Chilean Sea Bass (Toothfish) wholefish selling for over $15 per lb. this year, importers are growing concerned that the fish may price itself out of its primary markets.  Some have recently begun recommending cuts in portion sizes to high-end chefs to no more than 6 oz. in order to keep it on the menu.

Frozen Chilean Sea Bass prices in the US market are at record high levels this year as demand for the fish is strong while global are supplies tight in 2016.

Average Urner Barry prices for frozen Chilean Sea Bass H&G wholefish were up 21 percent in November. Frozen 6-8 kg wholefish prices averaged $15.12 per pound--a new record high price...

Full Story »

Southern Oregon Dungeness Crab Test Safe Prior to Discussion on Opening Dates

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Seafood News] by Susan Chambers - December 5, 2016

Oregon crab fishermen and state fishery managers may opt to open part of the state to Dungeness crabbing today, as domoic acid levels have dropped in the southern part of the state.

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife on Friday opened the area from Floras Creek, a few miles north of Port Orford, south to the California border to recreational crabbing. Recreational crabbing also is open from Tillamook Head, between Seaside and Cannon Beach, to the Columbia River. The 210-mile area between Tillamook Head and Floras Creek will remain closed to recreational bay and ocean crabbing due to elevated levels of domoic acid.

Some fishermen hope the commercial fishery could ...

Full Story »

Don’t Give Up on Snow Crab: 2017 Data Says Canadian Volumes Will Come Roaring Back

SEAFOODNEWS.COM  by John Sackton December 2, 2016

There are major changes in snow crab quotas projected for the Gulf of St. Lawrence in 2017.
 
The preliminary survey data done by the DFO shows significantly higher crab biomass than expected.  The data will be peer reviewed in February, at which time the biomass and exploitation rates...

Full Story »

California Opens 50-mile Stretch to Dungeness Crabbing; Oregon Test Results Trickle In

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Seafood News] by Susan Chambers - December 2, 2016

Crabbers in California were notified Thursday they could set their gear at 6 a.m. today in the area between Point Reyes, 38° 00’ N. lat., and a line near Salt Point, 38° 34.5’N. Lat., an area previously closed due to elevated levels of domoic acid, according to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. This area includes Bodega Bay, where crabbers have had their pots ready to go for weeks.

The 18-hour pre-soak period will allow fishermen to set their gear and begin harvesting the crab at 12:01 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 3.

However, the fishery will remain closed north of Salt Point to the ...

 

Full Story »

MSC Retreats from Transparency, Makes it More Difficult to See Updates on Fisheries in Assessment

SEAFOODNEWS.COM  by John Sackton  Dec 2, 2016

The marketing mavens at the Marine Stewardship Council have either deliberately or accidentally taken a big step backward in transparency.
 
The new Marine Stewardship Council Website has removed the prior lists of all global fisheries certified by the MSC, the list of all global fisheries currently in assessment, and the links to the complete assessment file- ie documents, submissions and letters - that go with each fisheries' application and approval.
 
Instead, the MSC website now features a breezy list of the five or ten most recent updates.. with no ability to go back and look at historic information.
 
It is possible to search, if you know the specific fishery name, and get a list of fisheries in assessment, certified and withdrawn.  And from there you can get to the assessment documents.  But the change makes it much more difficult to get a global view, and unless you know the exact name of the certification unit, it is easy not to find it.  This is why this is a step backward.
 
This is a ridiculous, and presumably, mistaken change on the part of an organization that has in the past championed the transparency of its operations....

 

Full Story »

Murray, Cantwell Push to Declare Six Fisheries Disasters in Washington State

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] - December 5, 2016

WASHINGTON, D.C.  – Last Friday, U.S. Senators Patty Murray (D-WA) and Maria Cantwell (D-WA) sent a letter to Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker calling for a declaration of commercial fisheries failures for six pending fishery disaster requests.

Fishing communities up and down Washington’s coast have suffered through several years of lower-than-expected catch. A federal fishery disaster declaration would make communities eligible for funding for projects such as fisheries recovery, job training, and infrastructure investments in the communities hardest hit.

Washington’s maritime industry supports almost 60,000 jobs directly and contributes $30 billion in economic activity each year, not including the shipbuilders, hotels, restaurants,...

Full Story »

Oceana Sues NMFS Over 25,000-mt West Coast Anchovy Limit

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Seafood News] by Susan Chambers - December 2, 2016

Continuing its crusade against fishing for forage fish species, the environmental group Oceana filed a lawsuit against the National Marine Fisheries Service challenging the agency's approval of a 25,000-metric ton annual catch limit for anchovy in 2017.

NMFS finalized the rule in October. It established the ACL for the central subpopulation of northern anchovy, a species that stretches along the west coasts of the U.S. and Mexico.

Oceana said in its complaint, filed Nov. 23 in U.S. District Court, the ACL threatens the viability of the northern anchovy population and the predators that depend on them. The group filed the suit less than a week after the Pacific Fishery Management Council meeting ended, during which time the Council directed its advisory bodies to develop approaches for an integrated stock assessment and alternative approaches to anchovy management.

The central subpopulation of northern anchovy is an important option for California fishermen when sardine fishing is allowed at only low levels or closed, as in 2015. It's also an important part of California's historic wetfish industry, even though a reduction fishery is no longer the target, California Wetfish Producers Association Executive Director Diane Pleschner-Steele said.

The problem is science: most current state and federal studies are based on sardine characteristics, not anchovy, ...

 

Full Story »
Competing Proteins: Modest Gains for Red Meat Markets Last Week
 
SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Urner Barry Newswires] by Jamie Chadwick - December 5, 2016 
 
This recap of red meat, poultry and egg market action serves to provide our valued seafood subscribers with a simple snapshot of current conditions throughout competing proteins.
 
In the beef complex last week, the boxed beef markets edged higher but the rally seemed to run out of steam as the week progressed. Buyers appeared to take a break after some early activity on concerns for continued large kills. The Choice and Select cutout values, which represent a composite value of the carcass based...

Full Story »

Russian Salmon Catches Exceed 420,000 Tons This Year, 4th Largest Volume Since 2000

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews]  December 1, 2016

Russia's Pacific salmon catch has exceeded 420,000 tons this season.  That total represents the 4th largest catch in the past 16 years, so this year was in the top quartile for Russia.

According to the  North Pacific Development Association based in Sapporo, the Russian ministry announced that they had exceeded last season's catch by 14%.
 
 By species, pink salmon topped with around 210,000 tons, accounting for 61% of the total catch.
 
It was followed by chum with 25%  (107,000 tons), sockeye...

Full Story »

Labor Shortages, High Density and Small Size, Plague Shandong Scallop Harvest

SEAFOODNEWS.COM  [xinhua] Translated by Amy Zhong  December 1, 2016

Too high density has cut the scallop sizes in some areas of Shandong Province.  Wu, one local farmer, cultivates 50 thousand cages of scallops in coastal areas and deep sea sites this year. But the scallop growth is unsatisfactory. The coastal ones reach the size of about 140 scallops per jin (0.5 kilo), while the deep-sea ones are only at around 160 scallops per jin.  

The problems have resulted from stocking too densely.  Last year, scallop growth in the area was good, so farmers expanded, and many relocated cages to this area.  However, the high density resulted in insufficient natural feed, creating a 'scallop desert'.

Other areas in the province where scallops were raised with lower densities have seen better results, with some farmers reporting sizes in the 100 to 120 range per Jin...

Full Story »

Processors in China Cutting Prices on Tilapia Purchases as Farmers Clear Ponds Before Cold Weather

SEAFOODNEWS.COM  [Shuichan News] Translated by Amy Zhong  December 1, 2016

Average tilapia prices in China for purchase by processors declined about 1% in the past two weeks.
 
Prices are stable in the Pearl River Delta, other areas have seen price declines.
 
Processing plants have cut their purchase prices in western Guangdong and Hainan. Local farmers are flooding tilapias into the markets now because they need to settle debts with feed factories and they are not well equipped for winter farming. Currently the available tilapias are at different sizes and smaller than before. So their prices decrease in both retail markets and...

Full Story »

Sea Pact Awards Four More Seafood Research Projects with Annual Grant Funding

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] December 1, 2016

Sea Pact announced its annual grant recipients this week and awarded funds to three exisiting projects while also adding four new recipients to the roster.

This is the fifth round of grants to be award by Sea Pact. The funds support projects that seek to improve the social, economic, and environmental responsibility of the global seafood supply chain.

All three existing grant recipients will continue, with a six-month extension granted to the University of North Texas (UNT), and full renewed funding granted to the Downeast Institute in Maine, and to Shannon Balfry for research work conducted at the Vancouver Aquarium...

Full Story »

News Summary December 2, 2016

Today's Main Story: Don't Give Up on Snow Crab: 2017 Data Says Canadian Volumes Will Come Roaring Back

Leading the news today is a focus on the major changes in snow crab quotas projected for the Gulf of St. Lawrence for 2017. According to Seafood News Editor John Sackton, the preliminary survey data done by the DFO shows significantly higher crab biomass than expected. The data will be peer reviewed in February, at which time the biomass and exploitation rates will be set. But the industry in the Gulf is talking as if they may see their highest total landings...

Full Story »

Southstream Seafoods Becomes Exclusive Importer of Ocean Fish's Frozen, Farm Raised Cobia

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] December 1, 2016

Southstream Seafoods has reached an agreement to be the exclusive importer for Ocean Fish’s frozen cobia.

Ocean Fish produces its cobia in Pacific waters nine miles offshore of Manta, Ecuador. The company processes the fish into  6 and 8 ounce portions.

Southstream said it will market the “Next Great Fish” under the Ocean Fish brand.

“After several years of R&D and substantial infrastructure investments, Ocean Fish production capabilities of  natural Cobia fillets has reached  a capacity that supports expanding a new and exciting  partnership,” Southstream said in a press release...

Full Story »

China Fishery Trustee Agrees to Terms to Keep Peruvian Assets Afloat During Bankruptcy Proceedings

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] November 30, 2016

The court appointed trustee charged with handling Pacific Andes’ Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing agreed to terms that will keep the company’s Peruvian operations in business during the restructuring process.

According to a release from China Fishery, William Brandt, Jr, who was appointed trustee of the company earlier this month, agreed tp ensure that Pacific Andes’ Peruvian assets will continue to operate until at least April 30, 2017.

This means Brandt will be allowed to secure adequate funding to keep the Peruvian operations afloat through the April deadline. He can also file to extend the April 30 date if necessary as long as all parties agree...

Full Story »

Tropical Aquaculture's Colombian Tilapia Producer Piscícola El Rosario Gets Two-Star BAP Approval

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] December 1, 2016

Tropical Aquaculture Products’ partner in fresh tilapia production, Piscícola El Rosario, received two-start certification against the Global Aquaculture Alliance’s  Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) program.

The two-star approval came Piscícola El Rosario’s latest certification of its processing plant.

Piscícola El Rosario is located in the Central Northwest region of Colombia known as Antioquia. The company first started tilapia production in 2009 and currently employs more than 140 people in its operations.

Tropical partnered with Piscícola El Rosario in 2012 as part of its strategy to expand its cooperative of farmers and processors...

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Russian King Crab Enters MSC Assessment After Passing Preliminary Review

SEAFOODNEWS.COM by Eugene Gerden  December 2, 2016

Russian king crab production is going to be certified to the MSC standard.

The Russian crab producers have started preparations for the certification in accordance with the standards of the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC), in a move, that should provide an opportunity for more regular supplies of Russian king crab to ship to Western markets.

This year the Russian Association of Crab Producers of Far East has successfully passed a procedure of preliminary assessment of crab fishing, which applied to three crab species on the West Kamchatka, and in particular king crab, blue, and southern tanner crab.  There is the possibility that next year it will apply to other crab species.

According to Alexander Dyplyakov, head of the Association of Crab Producers of Far East, the final assessment of the three above-mentioned species is expected to be completed in the second half of 2017.   At that time Russia will begin the process of certification of other crab species, such as Opilio snow crab from the North Okhotsk subzone, as well as some crab species of the eastern coast of Kamchatka.


Dyplyakov has also added that certification of Russian crab production is an acute need that will ensure stable supplies of Russian crab

Full Story »

PODCAST: Oregon and Washington's Dungeness Season Delayed and Alaska's Pollock Biomass Reported


Full Story »

As Expected, Hokkaido Scallop Landings fall to 21 year low

SEAFOODNEWS.COM  [SeafoodNews]  Dec 2, 2016

As has been expected given the pace of landings this season, total scallop production in Hokkaido has fallen to its lowest level in 21 years.
 
According to the Federation of Fisheries Cooperatives, total scallop harvest this year is 183,000 tons, compared with 200,400 tons last year.  This represents the weight of scallops in the shell.
 
In many average years Hokkaido produces around 300,000 tons of scallops in shell.
 
Landings are not expected to recover much in 2017...

Full Story »

China's CAPMA Establishes Catfish Institute to Support Expansion, Including in Domestic Market

SEAFOODNEWS.COM  [Shuichan News] Translated by Amy Zhong

CAPMA, (China Aquatic Products Processing and Marketing Alliance) has established a China Catfish Institute.
 
The institute is part of the China Ministry of Agriculture.
 
Although Chinese catfish aquaculture has been growing significantly, there were some quality and food safety problems that did great damage to the market.
 
With the industry now worth 50 billion Yuan, the institute will strengthen supervision of catfish industry and communication between companies. It also works hard to put into use scientific research findings..

Full Story »

Buyback Completed in Alaska Golden King Crab Fishery; NMFS to No Longer Collect Buyback Fee

SEAFOODNEWS.COM   by John Sackton  December 5, 2016

In a period of record high king crab prices, a percentage point or two might go unnoticed, but harvesters who hold Aleutian golden king crab quota will be getting some extra money having completed a industry wide buyout payment.
 
In 2005 the industry agreed to a capacity reduction program that cost $6,380,837, and reduced some of the outstanding fishing licenses.  As in other buyback programs, the loan was paid by an assessment against dockside values. 
 
Since 2005, the industry has paid a total of $10,004,785 to fully repay the loan, interest charges, and fees.  As a result, as of October 31, NMFS will no longer collect buyback fees in the Golden king crab industry, and it will refund any fees paid in excess of what was owed.  The announcement was made in a federal register notice.
 
Since the payments are collected through processors, NMFS will refund the overpayments back to the individual processors, who will be responsible for returning the fees back to the harvesters.
 
The original loan of $97,399,357.11 was allocated among all crab fisheries as follows:
 
1. Bristol Bay red king, $17,129,957.23,...

Full Story »

Ecosystem Reports at Council Point to Possible Future Declines in Pollock, Cod after some Good Years

SEAFOODNEWS.COM by John Sackton  November 30, 2016

One of the changes made by NOAA scientists monitoring the Bering Sea and the Gulf of Alaska in recent years has been the inclusion of ecosystem monitoring in their stock status reports.  There are now ecosystem chapters in the S.A.F.E (stock assessment and fishery evaluation) reports, required by Magnuson. 
 
This is a significant and beneficial change so that no longer are the reports exclusively focused on single stocks, but now they...

Full Story »

Sluggish Demand Weighs on Ecuador's US Shrimp Sales

SEAFOODNEWS.COM  by John Sackton  Nov. 30, 2016

Sluggish demand from buyers continues to weigh on Ecuador headless shell-on shrimp offerings to the US market.
 
Prices for 26-30 count continued lower this week, reflecting a trend that is now established in both the Latin American and Asian white shrimp markets.

The US has imported a lot of shrimp this year, with headless volumes up 2.1% for the year, and 3.3% in Sept. over last year...

Full Story »

NOAA Pre-season 2017 Harvest Forecast for SE Alaska Pinks is Up From ADF&G's at 46.2 M 

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] by Peggy Parker - December 1, 2016

The Southeast Purse Seine Task Force is getting a first look at the federal preseason forecast for pink salmon harvest today in Juneau, and it is slightly more than the Alaska Department of Fish and Game’s preseason forecast released November 7.

Both ADF&G and NOAA Fisheries will present the background and modeling techniques used to reach their similar forecasts. ADF&G is calling for a harvest of 43 M pink salmon next year. The NOAA Fisheries management and modeling team from Auke Bay predict a 46.2 M pink salmon harvest in SE Alaska in 2017.

“In 9 of the past 13 years, NOAA’s pre-season pink salmon harvest models have performed well, giving estimates...

Full Story »

Poland’s Fish Production, Consumption on the Rise with More Herring, Smoked Salmon

SEAFOODNEWS.COM By Jaroslaw Adamowski  December 1, 2016

Poland’s fish production and imports are on the rise, as the country’s consumption and household spending on fish are also increasing, according to the latest data from the state-run Institute of Agricultural and Food Economics (IERiGZ). This is accompanied by an increase in export sales by the country's fish and seafood processors.

In the first quarter of 2016, Polish households spent an average of PLN 9.38 (US$2.36) per person monthly on fish and seafood. This represented an increase of 7% compared with the same period a year earlier. The largest increase in consumption was posted by the smoked and dried fish and seafood category, up 16.7%, while frozen fish and seafood reported an increase of 8.3%, as indicated ...

Full Story »

China Halts Live Dungeness Crab From California in Response to Domoic Acid Reports 

China has suspended all inspections and approvals for live Dungeness Crab from California to enter its market in response to a state report that identified toxic algae blooms off the Pacific Coast from Humboldt Bay to Point Reyes, and that "half of the Dungeness crabs there are found to contain toxins." Chinese authorities also revoked licenses already issued and industry reports now say at least two companies that have sent live Dungeness crabs to China were refused entry.

Katrina Nakamura, a research scientist who runs a company called Sustainability Incubator offering the Labor Safe Screen, and who is based in Hawaii, says the Associated Press has not reported the Hawaiian tuna fleet's efforts to to verify the status of foreign contract workers on their ships, nor have they reported the industry's work to uncover potentials for abuse and trafficking. Nakamura also says the AP has not clarified certain errors in its reporting about the labor abuse situation surrounding the Haiwaiin issue following federal investigations into the matter. "For those of us who have dedicated our efforts to crew rights, it is not easy to raise questions for fear of looking defensive or naive about slavery. My intent is not to refute the story but rather to understand the conclusions based on the weight of evidence and in line with global definitions and findings by the authorities," said Nakamura.

In other news Chilean Sea Bass (Toothfish) wholefish is selling at record levels this year and importers are growing concerned that the fish may price itself out of its primary markets. Some have recently begun recommending cuts in portion sizes to high-end chefs to no more than 6 oz. in order to keep it on the menu. Demand for toothfish is up in recent years for two reasons: the decline in the available supply of IUU sourced toothfish to international markets and an increase in demand for certified sustainable fish here in the US.

Meanwhile, Oregon crab fishermen and state fishery managers may opt to open part of the state to Dungeness crabbing today, as domoic acid levels have dropped in the southern part of the state. The Garibaldi port has tested clean for one test already, after having a couple crab in November with elevated levels of domoic. Vessels collected more crab from Garibaldi, Newport and Coos Bay on Thursday, Dec. 1, for more testing.

Finally, Canada's Department of Fisheries and Oceans says it's cracking down on so-called "controlling agreements" that result in fishermen holding a fishing licence in name only. DFO will not reveal the results of its targeted license review, saying that could identify those under review. However, the department said results varied, meaning one or more license holders were in violation.

Full Story »

Maine Diver Scallop Season Opens; Restaurants Take Note

 

SEAFOODNEWS.COM  by John Sackton - November 30, 2016

Ask a waiter or waitress in a high-end New England restaurant 'Where are the scallops from', and mostly the answer you get is Maine, whether true or not.
 
This is because of the successful marketing of Maine diver scallops to chefs, who have adopted them as differentiated from the dragger landed scallops shucked by the New Bedford Fleet.
 
The Maine state waters season opens December 1st, and lasts about 60 days.
 
The Maine production is tiny, around 500,000 lbs of meats total, vs. the 40 to 50 million pounds landed in the primary East Coast scallop fishery from New Bedford to Virginia.
 
However, over the past five years, Maine landings have increased steadily to 175,000 lbs in 2010 to 525,000 pounds in 2014-2015.

Full Story »

ISSF Calls for Continued Cuts to Bigeye Landings, Reduction in FADs in Pacific

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] December 1, 2016

The International Seafood Sustainability Foundation (ISSF) released a position statement ahead of the 13th Regular Session Meeting of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC) that calls for reducing bigeye tuna catches and limiting the use of non-entangling FADs to protect sharks. 

The WCPFC is scheduled to meet in Nadi, Fiji, on December 5-9. The Commission oversees tuna stocks in the WCPO and is one of five tuna Regional Fishing Management Organizations (RFMOs)...

Full Story »
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