Coronavirus: Disruption in the seafood supply chain ripples from empty Philly restaurants to idle N.J. docks

“This is crazy,” says Mike Johnson, 53, a lifelong commercial fisherman who captains the Sea Farmer out of Barnegat Light. “[Stores] can’t put food on a shelf fast enough, so why can’t we move these fish? You got a fleet of boats sitting here, and you know, guys can’t move. You have a lot of battles as it is as a fisherman — the weather, not to mention catching the fish, overregulation and the insurance bills that don’t stop coming. And now you have a potentially three-month interruption of ‘don’t go fishing, period!’?” >click to read< 10:15

New England: Fishing Industry and offshore windfarmers no closer to finding solutions

The National Marine Fisheries Service and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, had refused to endorse BOEM’s draft EIS for Vineyard, complaining that fishing concerns were not addressed adequately. This helped trigger the government’s ongoing analysis of offshore wind’s cumulative impacts in the region.,, In public comments on the USCG port-access study, Meghan Lapp, fisheries liaison for frozen fish supplier Seafreeze, a subsidiary of Spain-based conglomerate Grupo Profand, called for the lanes.,, Lapp also called for an assurance of maritime safety that she said would be compromised by radar interference from wind turbines. >click to read< 08:34

Coronavirus is death knell for Scottish fishing industry

A full four-fifths of the fleet is currently tied up, estimates veteran Fraserburgh skipper Mark Robertson. Like businesses the world over, British fishing has collapsed in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. “Sales have totally died a death. We’re not exporting anything. There is no market,” Robertson laments. In keeping with the wider UK fishing industry, the vast majority of his catch, upwards of 80%, is sold in Europe. As the continent awoke to the COVID-19 crisis and went into lockdown, demand for his product crashed. >click to read< 07:47

Nova Scotia lobster boat that sank was modified with tailgate

The Transportation Safety Board says an investigation into the December 2018 sinking of a lobster boat off Boutiliers Cove, N.S., found the vessel had been modified but did not receive a required stability assessment. The board says the Charlene A, a 10 metre longliner with 150 lobster traps aboard, sank in St. Margarets Bay when water started pouring onto the deck through an open tailgate at the rear of the vessel. >click to read< 19:28

December 1, 2018 –Crew safe after boat sinks on 1st day of lobster fishing season – The Charlene A. began taking on water about 1.5 kilometres off Hacketts Cove, N.S., shortly after leaving the wharf at 7 a.m. The crew turned around and started heading back to port, but the vessel sank 300 to 400 metres offshore. >click to read<

How Alaskan Fishermen Are Dealing With The Coronavirus

While the pandemic is crippling every industry, the seafood supply chain is at a standstill. Producing more by volume than all other states combined, Alaskan fisheries are exceptionally important to seafood markets. The outbreak could disrupt the start of salmon season for Alaskan fishers this year, and there is currently little understanding of how the seafood industry will be affected now and in the future. The salmon season in Alaska runs from May through September. In this time, many fishers pull in a majority of their annual income. >click to read< 17:44

Fishing Boat Rescued By Scarborough RNLI

Scarborough RNLI’s all-weather Shannon lifeboat launched in the early hours this morning when a net snared a fishing boat’s propeller. However, the 34m Alcedo BA77 scalloper was 4.8m deep so couldn’t be towed into the harbour at either Scarborough or Whitby. The stricken vessel, built in Whitby and registered in Ballantrae, Scotland, was about 15 miles east of Scarborough, on a choppy sea. The coastguard eventually decided that the best course of action was to call a commercial recovery vessel to tow it to Teesside. >click to read< 14:24

Coronavirus: Quick state by state reference tool regarding non-essential business restrictions in New England states

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic and its threat to public health from in-person contact, as well as the significant impact on financial markets, nearly every state, including every state in New England, has issued orders limiting business operations (closure orders, stay-at-home orders, or shelter-in-place orders).  Except for Rhode Island, all of the orders across New England reflect federal guidance issued by the Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), regarding which business sectors constitute the “critical infrastructure” and therefore should remain open.,, The CISA sectors that may continue in-person operations fall into 14 categories: >click to read< 10:16

Coronavirus: Fishermen ‘humbled’ by the support for industry in crisis, hope to continue direct to the public sales

Fishermen say they have been humbled by the public reaction and support as the market for local produce has boomed amid the coronavirus crisis. But despite a busy weekend of trade for pop-up stalls and deliveries across the Island, industry leaders have warned that it is not enough to sustain the whole 130-vessel fleet. Crews hope they can continue to sell produce direct to the public despite the Island going into lockdown yesterday morning. Fishing has been deemed an essential industry meaning crews can still continue to catch. >click to read< 09:28

Coronavirus: Emergency ‘lobster flights’ to save $800 million worth of seafood

Hundreds of tonnes of lobster and abalone will be flown on emergency freight flights out of Australia in a $110 million push to stop a massive downturn across the seafood sector. The government will fund 200 40-tonne flights of Australian produce to China, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore and the United Arab Emirates as stock goes to waste and staff are laid off. In Western Australia alone up to 98 per cent of its lobster produce usually heads to China. Fishers have pulled up their pots as they cannot get the product into centres such as Shanghai. >click to read< 08:33

Complete AIS Kit to Provide Boat Owners with Affordable Man Overboard System

The new Ocean Signal ATB1 AIS package unites the latest in AIS Class B+ technology in the ATB1 transponder with two award-winning rescueME MOB1 man overboard beacons. Ensuring the best chance of rapid rescue from either the survivor’s own vessel or other vessels in the vicinity if someone falls into the water, the AIS kit brings onboard safety to a new level. Easily integrated within a life jacket, the compact MOB1 communicates with the ATB1, as well as boats within about a five-mile range, and will provide two methods of rapidly relaying the man overboard’s position in an emergency. >click to read< 07:49

Coronavirus: Louisiana’s $2 billion seafood industry hard, leaders urge public to buy local

Louisiana’s $2 billion seafood industry is struggling. “These are all very small family-owned businesses, and they are very dependent on local sales,” Twin Parish Port Commissioner Wendell Verret said. Larger seafood businesses will also be hurt. As demand for seafood goes down, they’ll be stuck with too much inventory. When businesses stop buying seafood from fishermen, the effects could be disastrous. “Once the fishermen are impacted and they cannot continue to fish, they lose their boats. They lose their equipment. Video, >click to read< 07:09

Maine: Bivalve Shellfish Direct Sales – Ways harvesters may sell product legally

DMR understands these are trying times and many shellfish harvesters and growers are looking for ways to sell directly to customers. However, bivalve shellfish pose a risk to consumers and public safety is critically important even during a pandemic. Below are ways harvesters may sell product legally: Sales directly from the harvester’s home – customers must pick up, no delivery Sales directly from an aquaculture lease (not LPA) – customers must pick up, no delivery,, >click to read more information, with links< 17:29

Coronavirus: Canada to help all businesses with revenue loss of 30% or more

A Canadian program to help businesses pay wages during the coronavirus outbreak applies to all enterprises and charities with a revenue loss of 30% or more, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on Monday. Trudeau, who said last week that Ottawa would cover up to 75% of the wages of people working for small and medium enterprises, made clear the aid would not depend on business size. It will be capped at C$847 ($596) a week per worker. The announcement marks the latest move by the Liberal government to intensify the fight against the coronavirus and COVID-19, the disease it causes. >click to read< 16:47

Coronavirus: ‘We’re trying to stay alive’ – Santa Barbara fishermen sell straight to the consumer

Instead of selling to fish processors, who then sell to restaurants, Mr. Cheverez resolved to get his product out to the public directly. With the help of other fishermen who have joined the operation, Mr. Cheverez now offers fresh seafood immediately out of Santa Barbara Harbor – no restaurant, grocery store or processor needed. “We’re trying to stay alive,” said Mr. Cheverez. “We’re selling what we sold before, just without the middle-man. We have one- to two-day old products that we’re selling, and the local community is buying from us right away.” >click to read< 14:39

Bring Back the Peddlers

With a quarantine upon us, I wonder what it would be like to have our neighborhood peddlers back. Trusted men who added life to our streets, they rumbled down Wealth Avenue in waves. Joe the ragman was a musty unshaven, gnome-like character,, The fisherman’s dark-green, open, panel truck transported firm, fresh fish neatly arranged in wooden sections fitted to the bed of the truck. A rattling scale on a chain hung from a hook. Melting ice dripped from the tailgate. Unshaven and wearing a discolored old Yankee cap tipped to the side, he bore the vaporous look of exhaustion. His canvas coat was stained with dried blood. His high rubber boots flopped against his knees. He grabbed the fillet, flipped it onto the scale, wrapped it in newspaper and off he went, the engine rumbling. >click to read< 12:19

Fish farm limbo – Cermaq Canada gets more time to decide on Nova Scotia fish farm expansion. Lobster fishers in limbo!

The firm is part of Cermaq Global, formerly a Norwegian state-controlled salmon producer purchased by Mitsubishi Corporation in 2014 for $1.4 billion, with operations in Norway, Chile, and British Columbia. The company is proposing a $500 million expansion to develop between 15 and 20 open-pen Atlantic salmon farm sites, four hatcheries and two processing plants and needs a minimum annual production of 20,000 metric tonnes of fish. That’s an amount that, according to provincial and federal data, would increase the number of salmon farms in this province from eight to 28 and would more than double the current levels of production. >click to read< 11:15

Providing seafood to the public in Gloucester: Drive-Thru “Pop-Up” Event-Tuesday 3/31/20

We at Fisherman’s Wharf Gloucester were so overwhelmed with the unexpected turnout from Saturday’s event. We want to continue to provide seafood to the public. We’re stocking up on Fresh Haddock right off F/V Miss Trish II and Scallops from our local day boats. Thank you for your support of our local business, and we look forward to seeing you at Tuesday’s event. Scallop and Haddock Drive-Thru “Pop-Up” Event, Tuesday March 31st Starting at 12:00 pm-5pm 37 Rogers Street, Gloucester, MA details, photos, >click to read< 10:01

Fate of spring lobster fishery up in the air

“We recognize that current market conditions facing our industry are challenging, and the need to ensure that logistical support systems are in place to facilitate the movement and sale of seafood products.” The statement then points to the Canada Emergency Response Benefit that will pay $2,000 a month to anyone put out of work with COVID-19 as a mitigating factor. But with lobster licences going for nearly a half-million dollars in many harbours along the shore and the right to fish crab inshore going for around $130,000 per trap, that benefit doesn’t relieve the stress of recent buy-ins to this debt-driven industry. Buyers and processors also rely upon debt. >click to read< 09:19

Coronavirus: COVID-19 concerns delays southern N.B. lobster season 1 month, other fisheries scheduled to start on set dates

Department of Fisheries and Oceans accepted a request from the Fundy North Fishermen’s Association to delay the the start of the lobster fishery in the two zones from March 31 to April 30. The association represents fishermen from St. Martins to St. Stephen including the communities of Deer Island and Campobello Island. “In light of the current circumstances, and with input and support from groups involved, DFO has accepted this request and will be delaying the start of the fishing season by 30 days,” wrote Jane Deeks, press secretary to the Fisheries Minister Bernadette Jordan in an email. >click to read< 18:06

Californians urge Gov Newsom pause in Delta Tunnel planning during Coronavirus crisis

The state of California is continuing ahead with plans for the Delta Tunnel, a project to divert more water from Northern California for San Joaquin Valley agribusiness and Southern California water agencies, in spite of the COVID 19 global pandemic. Fishermen, Tribal leaders, conservationists, environmental justice advocates, scientists, many elected leaders, family farmers, Delta business owners and the general public oppose the construction of the environmental and economic damage it will cause to the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta, West Coast fisheries and the people of California. Dan Bacher reports, >click to read< 17:37

Looking Back at FishNet USA – “New Conservationists” and the Flopping Flounder Fishing Club

In these days of seemingly unrelenting grim news I thought I’d try to lighten the atmosphere somewhat by sharing with you what I consider possibly entertaining piece I wrote and distributed twenty years ago. For those unfamiliar with Mid-Atlantic fisheries management, the striped bass (Morone saxatilis) fishery is managed by a per-state quota, and each states’ quota is divided into commercial and recreational components. Way back when the New Jersey Legislature passed a bill which made it illegal to sell striped bass so the commercial quota was added onto the recreational quota. The commercial was never – and still isn’t – very large, but the unfairness of the law and the fact that it on occasion it necessitates the over-the-side disposal of what would (should?) be perfectly saleable striped bass bycatch grates on a whole lot of commercial fishermen. Please stay safe and healthy, Nils >click to read< 11:38

Coronavirus pandemic exposes China’s venality

China makes almost all our medical personal protection equipment. Who knew? It also came to light that much of our most widely used and critically important pharmaceutical drugs are also being made almost exclusively in China.,, Meanwhile the Lunar New Year Holiday was in full swing in China. Millions of people were preparing for the upcoming celebration. In Wuhan, tens of thousands of people were attending massive shopping fairs to purchase gifts. One such event was a potluck dinner held in downtown Wuhan that brought in more than 40,000 families from all over China. These people carried the virus to the world. It was almost seven weeks from the appearance of the coronavirus before the Chinese government was forced to admit its existence. If the government had acted even three weeks earlier, the world would have been spared the horrific pandemic., by Marvin F. Dugger >click to read< 09:56

Markey: Aid for fishermen only the beginning – Fishermen Getting Hammered By Restaurant Shutdowns

Sen. Edward Markey warned members of the fishing community Saturday that the country was just at the beginning of the coronavirus health crisis. “These numbers are mounting, the number of cases, and it could go on potentially for a sustained period of time,” Markey said to dozens of fishing industry leaders, state legislators and mayors on a weekend conference call. “Three hundred million is a great start, but it’s hard to imagine it will go very far,” said Jeffrey Reichle, president of Lund’s Fisheries of Cape May, New Jersey,,, >click to read< 07:27

Fishermen Getting Hammered By Restaurant Shutdowns – They are also looking for relief from government rules. >click to read< 07:30

Coast Guard, good Samaritan assist vessel taking on water near Sitka, Alaska

The Coast Guard and a good Samaritan assist a vessel taking on water near Sitka, Alaska, Saturday. An MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew from Air Station Sitka delivered a dewatering pump to the fishing vessel Tamarack, which was taking on water approximately 35 miles west of Sitka Saturday. The crew of Tamarack utilized the dewatering pump to prevent additional flooding. The good Samaritan vessel Pacific Bounty responded to the urgent marine information broadcast, arrived on scene and assisted in dewatering the vessel. Video, >click to read< 06:49

In a Stalled Sports World, Everyone’s Day with Coronavirus Comes

Captain Tommy has the best stories. The one about the giant squid he snared in his net. The shark flopping around on the boat’s deck. Embellished or not, Captain Tommy has real fish tales, gathered from 40 years as a shrimper on the waters of the Gulf of Mexico, gone months at a time and returning to stink like the inside of a trout. In those days, Captain Tommy was more comfortable on the ocean than the land. He understood it out there, embraced its solitary nature. While most struggle to gain sea legs, Captain Tommy, later in life, had to find land legs. He eventually found them, then stumbled upon a twice-divorced mother of three, married her, cared for her children and finally had his only child. He named his shrimp boat after her. >click to read< 20:34

Coronavirus: Fears fuel assault on Bering Sea fishing boat, federal prosecutors charge

Federal prosecutors have charged a worker on a Bering Sea factory fishing boat with assault after he allegedly broke the eye socket of another person who criticized him for serving food without gloves during the coronavirus pandemic. Prosecutors say Maurice Young was a housekeeper and galley assistant on the 235-foot SeaFreeze America, which has about 65 crew members and is homeported in Seattle. At the time of the alleged assault, on Monday, the ship was underway about 120 miles east of the Pribilof Islands. >click to read< 16:00

How do you apply for small business funds from stimulus package?

Small businesses around the country got a $370 billion lifeline in the $2 trillion Coronavirus Aid bill,, But those businesses want to know what kind of relief will it provide? Dave Ketchen is the Harbert Eminent Scholar and Professor of Management at Auburn University, and he has been looking over the legislation. He said time is perhaps the biggest factor in question. “I definitely think it’s a much needed life preserver,” he said. “A big question is on the implementation side. If you throw a life preserver to somebody and they drown before they get it, it didn’t do them any good. A big question is how quickly is this money going to get into small business people’s hands.” >click to read< 14:47

Fake News claim: Coronavirus has been found in crab legs

Social media users have been sharing an image online that purports to be a screen grab of a news report claiming that the coronavirus has been found in crab legs. Examples can be seen here and here. The screen grab image appears to have been created with an application called “News Maker – Create The News.” It is available on the Apple App Store and provides different options for styles and fake news station names.,, Both the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control say food is not connected to coronavirus transmission,, >click to read< 13:37

Coronavirus: Nova Scotia lobster industry gets creative during pandemic to sell their catch

Lobster was Nova Scotia’s most valuable export in 2019, but this year, export markets have ground to a halt due to COVID-19. That has left the province’s lobster fisherman finding creative ways to sell their catch — with safety measures in place. “I’ve asked people to call ahead, so I can have their order ready. That way, I just take it to their vehicle and they open up their trunk and I just set it in their trunk,” said Bryce Hirtle, a fisherman on Nova Scotia’s south shore. 4 Videos, >click to read< 10:34

‘Too early to tell’ impact of Coronavirus on New Bedford fishing industry

Since the fishing industry was deemed part of the food supply chain, it is allowed to keep operating as an essential service under Gov. Charlie Baker’s stay-at-home advisory. “Immediate impacts have been minimal,” scalloper Eric Hansen said Thursday, “The market is a little bit depressed but nothing crazy. My bigger concern is the future, what’s going to happen in the next couple of months.” What worries Hansen about the future is the April 1 start of the next scalloping season, which will bring back scallopers that hadn’t been fishing because they used up their 2019 allocations. >click to read< 09:16