Category Archives: New England

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

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

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

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

‘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

First Circuit Upholds Conviction of ‘Codfather’ Associate

The conviction of a former sheriff’s department captain for his role in the overseas money laundering of a notorious New England fishing magnate known as “the Codfather” was upheld,, Jamie Melo was accused of distributing envelopes containing large amounts of cash to associates in the men’s room of Boston’s Logan Airport before the group went through security. The group, including the Codfather, was traveling to Portugal for a charitable fundraiser called “Thanksgiving in the Azores” that was sponsored by the Bristol County Sheriff’s Department. Once in the Azores, the Codfather, real name Carlos Rafael, allegedly received the envelopes back and then deposited $76,000 in cash in a bank account. >click to read< 08:31

Port of Galilee: Fishing Industry getting hit hard economically by Coronavirus

Hundreds of people have been going to Galilee to buy seafood right off the boat, and there will be more help on the way. As of Thursday, the catch of the day by commercial fishermen in the Port of Galilee were sold out. “It’s been a process trying to find markets again for our product,” said Captain Brian Thibeault on the Ashley Anne II boat. Fishermen will be going out again on Friday to haul lobster and Jonah crab, to be sold at wholesale prices dockside Saturday. Video, >click to read< 10:03

Seafood Connect! Maine Fishermen hold events to get products direct to customers

It’s first come, first served this weekend at Maine’s Working Waterfront – Seafood Connect event. In the midst of everything happening in the world, the local fishing community has been hit hard. This event will feature fresh seafood at an “off the boat” price. Any fisherman who is legal to sell is welcome. No preorders. Fishermen will decide what/if they are selling each week. As of May 4, the group will be switching from the Rockland location to the Reny’s in Camden. Bring bags to take your seafood home. Names, phone numbers, locations, product diversity! >click to read< 09:21

Coronavirus: Letter from 200+ US seafood industry stakeholders to Trump Administration

March 24, 2020, Dear President Trump.  We write as participants in America’s seafood supply chain, a critical component of the country’s domestic food infrastructure and one of the major economic drivers in our country’s coastal communities and states. Empty restaurants, cafes, and dining halls are a visible reminder of the ongoing, unprecedented public health efforts to blunt the spread of COVID-19. The livelihoods of the chefs, cooks, servers, and other staff are obvious and direct casualties of those government efforts. The economic disruption caused by forced restaurant closures and active encouragement for Americans to “shelter in place,” however, extend far beyond the food service sector. >click to read< 19:37

Coronavirus: Fishing coalition seeks $4B in federal aid to cover lost restaurant sales

Commercial fishing industry members say they’re trying to stay afloat while the demand for fish dwindles as restaurants are reduced to take-out only amidst the coronavirus health crisis. Saving Seafood, a national coalition of seafood harvesters that includes New Jersey members, is now turning to the federal government for $4 billion in financial help.  “We have to manage our expectations right now. This is a national issue and it’s not going to be solved in a day or two,” said Greg DiDomenico, executive director of the Garden State Seafood Association, a commercial trades group that’s also a part of the Saving Seafood national coalition.  >click to read< 18:28

Coronavirus: Maine DMR To Open Elver Fishery After Implementing COVID-19 Protections

After ensuring protocols are in place to protect fishermen, dealers and communities from the spread of COVID-19, the Maine Department of Marine Resources will open the elver season at 8 a.m. on Monday, March 30, 2020. Under the authority established by Governor Janet Mills’ March 15 Civil Emergency Proclamation, licensed elver harvesters may fish for and sell the quota of another licensed harvester. Dealers have also agreed to limit transactions significantly by only buying 1 pound or more of elvers. >click to read< 12:12

Athearn Marine Agency Boat of the Week: 82′ Raised Fo’c’sle Trawler with Federal and State Permits

To see specifications, information and 1 photo, >click here< To see all the boats in this series, >click here< 11:51

Always Top Quality! Your Seafreeze Ltd. Price Sheet for March 2020 Has Arrived!

Contact our sales team today! To review the complete price list from Seafreeze Ltd., >Click here< – “The only thing we treat our fish with, is respect” Seafreeze Ltd! >Click here< to visit our website!

A Message From XTRATUF

“During these challenging times, the team at XTRATUF wants to ensure the fishing community works together, stays safe and feels supported, whether on land or sea. “The fishing industry and fishermen need continued consumer access for purchasing fish and seafood, and many businesses are offering alternative delivery options. XTRATUF is hoping to help support the community by connecting consumers across the country to healthy, fresh protein, shipped directly to your doorstep. XTRATUF is also actively working to build consumer awareness through a new #XTRATUFTOGETHER campaign, because even during challenging times, we can stand together and keep each other healthy. >click to read< 07:40

Hustle and Innovation: Maine fishermen turn to direct-to-consumer outlets

Fishermen and seafood farmers are struggling with markets that have recently slammed shut. But over the past week, at least a few outlets have been established to connect the businesses directly to consumers. A new Facebook group called Maine’s Working Waterfront-Seafood Connect began offering consumers the chance to pre-order lobster, oysters and other seafood. Two pick-ups have been held in Rockland. >click to read< 06:40

Doing Well! Lobstermen survive with off-the-boat sales

Seacoast lobstermen have seen complete sellouts of their weekly catch since dining establishments and other businesses began to shut down as a result of the health emergency – but only because they’re finding alternative solutions to sell, mostly via retail sales to the public right off the boat. Most lobstermen were notified by their wholesale dealers last week that since restaurants in Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts have been mandated to go takeout-only – resulting in many opting to close their doors completely – the buyers won’t be buying. There’s no one to sell to. >click to read< 19:57

Senate Democrats, Greens Seek Climate Mandates In Federal Stimulus Bills

Senate Democrats and environmentalists want to tack climate change mandates onto proposed federal aid to major airlines and cruise lines reeling from the coronavirus pandemic. In a letter to the House and Senate leadership, eight Senate Democrats said last week that any financial assistance to the travel industry “should be paired with requirements that companies act in a more responsible fashion” by reducing their carbon footprint. “Climate change damages will wreak havoc on a scale even greater than the coronavirus,” said the Friday letter headed by the Center for Biological Diversity. Democrats who signed the letter were Sens. Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island, Martin Heinrich of New Mexico, Jeffrey Merkley of Oregon, Cory A. Booker of New Jersey, Edward Markey of Massachusetts, Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut, Tina Smith of Minnesota and Debbie Stabenow of Michigan. >click to read< 10:12

Federal study surveys spawning Atlantic Cod – Research area sits in waters zoned for offshore wind projects.

NOAA, the state Division of Marine Fisheries, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth School of Marine Science and Technology are all participating in the study, which is funded by the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management. The research is focused on what may be one of the last remaining major seasonal spawning gatherings in the Northwest Atlantic, according to the state Division of Marine Fisheries. “It’s certainly been a persistent spawning aggregation and there are not many in New England,” said fisheries scientist Steve Cadrin, principal investigator on the project for the School of Marine Science and Technology. Atlantic cod populations are at historic lows, hammered by chronic overfishing and climate change. >click to read< 07:06

Fishermen and road salt contractor eviciton deadline from State Pier is delayed

State Pier operator Gateway has extended the deadline for port tenants to move out, giving commercial fishermen and a major local road salt distributor an extra four months to find a new home. The extension is not coronavirus related, rather the result of negotiations among Gateway, the Connecticut Port Authority and tenants who were expecting to be displaced March 31 to accommodate the offshore wind industry. Construction activity associated with a $157 million planned overhaul of the port is expected to begin later this year as it converts into a wind turbine staging area for joint partners Ørsted and Eversource. >click to read< 08:01

Coronavirus: Gov. Mills asks President Trump for direct financial assistance in support of Maine’s fishing and seafood industries

Governor Janet Mills pressed President Donald Trump to marshal the resources of the federal government to support Maine’s vital fishing and seafood industries. “I am writing today to ask for your immediate assistance in support of Maine’s iconic seafood industry. The COVID-19 pandemic is taking a substantial toll on Maine’s independent fishermen, aquaculturists, wholesale dealers, and seafood processors,” wrote Governor Mills. “The markets for their products are collapsing both globally and locally. The men and women who ply our waters harvesting lobster, groundfish, herring, shellfish, countless other species, and farming aquacultured products are the very backbone of our rural coastal economy.” >click to read< 15:19

Coronavirus: Maine DMR Temporarily Closes Elver Fishery

Due to public health concerns associated with COVID-19, the Maine Department of Marine Resources (DMR) has announced the closure of Maine’s elver fishery, which had been scheduled to start Sunday, March 22, 2020. The closure, done through emergency rulemaking, will be for a minimum of two weeks and will be reassessed at that time. “The Coronavirus pandemic continues to impact Maine’s fisheries in ways we could not have imagined,” said Maine DMR Commissioner Patrick Keliher. “Portions of the elver fishery make it impossible to follow social distancing recommendations, including maintaining 6 feet from other people to reduce the spread of this disease.” >click to read< 18:41

Coronavirus: NOAA Fisheries is temporarily waiving requirement for vessels to carry a fishery observer or at-sea monitor.

As part of our response to the COVID-19 pandemic, NOAA Fisheries is temporarily waiving the requirement for vessels with Northeast fishing permits to carry a fishery observer or at-sea monitor. The waiver will be in effect through April 4, and future extensions of this waiver will be evaluated weekly.
For details, please read the letter from the Regional Administrator Dear Partners and Stakeholders: As part of our response to the COVID-19 pandemic, NOAA Fisheries is temporarily waiving the requirement for vessels with Northeast fishing permits to carry a fishery observer or at-sea monitor. The waiver will be in effect through April 4, and future extensions of this waiver will be evaluated weekly. >click to read the rest< 15:56

Small Business Relief Tracker: Funding, Grants And Resources For Business Owners Grappling With Coronavirus

Some 30 million American small businesses are high on the coronavirus’ list of victims. Nearly half of these companies say the pandemic is to blame for unprecedented revenue declines, and with no clear end in sight, the possibility of temporary closures has become a reality for many. In an effort to help business owners find financial relief, we’ve rounded up all of the government agencies, private companies and nonprofit organizations that are extending support. We’ll be adding to this list as the situation develops, so check back for updates. >click to read< 13:01

Coronavirus: Fishermen cite at-sea monitors as potential virus source

Groundfishermen and sector managers are growing increasingly frustrated at NOAA Fisheries over what they perceive as the lack of clarity on at-sea monitoring requirements in the midst of the novel coronavirus outbreak. Dave Leveille, manager for Northeast Fishing Sectors II and VI, said Thursday that he has fielded numerous queries from fishermen asking why they still are being forced to accept assigned at-sea observers on their boats while health experts and the federal government are encouraging measures to reduce human contact to try to halt the spread of the dangerous virus. >click to read< 11:19

Coronavirus affecting Maine fisheries

As of early Wednesday morning, the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention had yet to report a single confirmed or presumed case of COVID-19, the respiratory infection caused by the coronavirus, in eastern Maine, but the lobster industry is already feeling the impacts of the global pandemic. “The market is really poor,” Stonington lobsterman Hilton Turner said Tuesday afternoon.,, The uncertainties arising from the coronavirus will likely affect other fisheries. The state’s elver fishing season opens on Sunday, and virtually the entire harvest is shipped to buyers in China. >click to read< 10:19

Coronavirus: NOAA closes Gloucester office to public, takes meetings to web

NOAA Fisheries is restricting access to its Gloucester office and the New England Fishery Management Council is converting many of its meetings to webinars as precautions against further spread of the novel coronavirus. NOAA Fisheries said its Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office in the Blackburn Industrial Park continues to operate, but it is limiting access to the building to employees, as well as to visitors and deliveries deemed essential to its mission. “This measure is taken out of an abundance of caution and our commitment to protecting the health and safety of our employees and constituents during the COVID-19 virus pandemic,” NOAA Fisheries said in a statement. Suspend the observer program, right now!  >click to read< 07:01

Coronavirus: The country is shutting down. Shutdown NOAA’s Fisheries Observer Program, nationally. Right Now.

I am writing this editorial today as a responsible, conscientious American fishermen and citizen, in complete disbelief of the irresponsibility of a U.S. government agency during the current international coronavirus crisis. While the nation is in national emergency mode, states are closing public spaces, schools, universities, daycares, restaurants, encouraging social distancing, putting people in quarantine, outlawing large gatherings, and taking unprecedented emergency measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19, NOAA Fisheries is pursuing the complete opposite when it comes to the fishing industry and ignoring all public safety precautions. more by Hank Lackner, F/V Jason and Danielle >click to read<06:03

Athearn Marine Agency Boat of the Week: 35′ Gillnetter/Lobster boat, 300HP John Deere

Specifications, information and 5 photos >click here<, Vessel is in excellent condition! To see all the boats in this series, >click here< 15:23

Coronavirus: COVID-19 hits lobster industry hard

On the day when Massachusetts restaurants officially were barred from offering on-site dining for at least three weeks, boat prices for live lobster were reported to dip to as low as $3 a pound in Maine and $3.25 in Massachusetts and wholesale dealers were trying to determine their next steps. “Right now, we’re trying to figure out what we’re going to do,” said Joe Ciaramitaro, one of the owners of Capt. Joe & Sons in East Gloucester.,, “It’s tricky right now,” said Monte Rome, owner of Gloucester-based Intershell. “The restaurant business for us is obviously over for now. It’s one minute at a time, not even one day at a time.” >click to read< 05:58

Coronavirus: Maine DMR Director Kelliher urges lobster industry to stop harvesting if there is no market

Patrick Kelliher, director of the state’s Department of Marine Resources, issued a call Monday for co-operation between fishermen and dealers in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. “Harvesters and dealers must put aside their differences and must actively communicate with each other about the realities of the market,” Kelliher said in a notice posted on the department’s website. “Harvesters must refrain from landing products if there is no market for it. Dealers must refrain from buying product for which there is no market in order to minimize loss associated with inventory that can’t be sold.” Kelliher said he does not have the authority to close the lobster fishery, but he is working with Maine Gov. Janet Mills to “fully understand what authorities may — or may not exist.” >click to read< 13:46