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The American Albacore Fishing Association & Responsible Offshore Development Alliance Respond to Seaspiracy

American Albacore Fishing Association Logo

RESPONSIBLE OFFSHORE DEVELOPMENT ALLIANCE Logo

Illegal fishing hurts oceans, the environment, and responsible fishermen. It’s a major problem but removing seafood from diets is not the solution.

U.S. fishermen are the backbone of our coastal economies. Supporting the American seafood industry ensures strong communities, healthy ecosystems, and reliable food security for generations to come.”
— AAFA/RODA
WASHINGTON, D.C. , UNITED STATES, March 25, 2021 /EINPresswire.com/ -- The American Albacore Fishing Association (AAFA), a non-profit marketing organization representing commercial pole & line, troll fishing vessels, and the Responsible Offshore Development Alliance (RODA), a broad membership-based coalition of fishing industry associations and fishing companies, announce today their response to the Netflix film, Seaspiracy.

“U.S. fishermen have been sustainably harvesting our fisheries resources for generations,” says Tim Thomas, AAFA board president, and life-long fisherman out of Garibaldi, Oregon. “We work within the robust national standards of the Magnuson Stevens Act, which requires by law that overfishing must be ended immediately if it occurs and has accountability measures to ensure bycatch is avoided. Commercial fishermen rely on ocean health for their livelihoods and want to see their sons, daughters, and grandchildren fishing in the future.”

AAFA represents a traditional, multi-generational fishery of U.S. fishermen harvesting albacore tuna with the pole & line and troll methods. These American small businesses catch fish one at a time using one of the most sustainable, environmentally conscious tuna harvest methods in the world that has full traceability back to the harvest vessel. Albacore tuna, like 93 percent of U.S. fishery stocks, is not subject to overfishing.

In 2018 alone, U.S. fishermen added $5.6 billion to the economy and supported over a million jobs. IUU fishing harms responsible U.S. fishermen and the communities they support by undercutting their products with cheaper seafood from abroad. There are many ways governments, fishermen, and the public can work globally to stop illegal fishing, but removing seafood from diets is not the solution - for the environment or for public health. The recently published 2020 - 2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans found that almost 90 percent of Americans consume less than the recommended amount of seafood.

“American seafood provides one of the most sustainable sources of animal protein in the world, supports healthy coastal communities, and delivers critical nutrition to a growing global population,” says Annie Hawkins, Executive Director of RODA. “Advocating that people stop eating seafood because criminals exploit the system is like advocating to ban the internet because criminals use it as a black market. We need to significantly grow our global effort to stop illegal fishing, but we can’t punish the U.S. fishing industry for criminal or poorly regulated industries abroad.”

U.S. fishermen are the backbone of our coastal economies. Supporting the American seafood industry ensures strong communities, healthy ecosystems, and reliable food security for generations to come. To fight illegal fishing, keep enjoying responsibly harvested American seafood.

To join AAFA and RODA in this conversation, share your thoughts across social media using the hashtag #ProtectUSFishermen.

About American Albacore Fishing Association
The American Albacore Fishing Association (AAFA) is a non-profit organization representing commercial pole & line, and troll vessels. AAFA seeks to ensure responsible fishery management practices and the participation of vital fishing communities. It supports education regarding responsible fishing methods and promotes the health benefits of tuna consumption along with environmental benefits of sustainable fishery practices. AAFA strives to ensure the economic viability of pole & line troll fisheries now and into the future.

About Responsible Offshore Development Alliance
Responsible Offshore Development Alliance (RODA) is a broad membership-based coalition of fishing industry associations and fishing companies — across the United States — committed to improving the compatibility of new offshore development with their businesses. The alliance works to directly collaborate with relevant regulatory agencies (e.g., National Marine Fisheries Service, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, U.S. Coast Guard, fishery management councils, and state agencies), scientists, and others to coordinate science and policy approaches to managing the development of the Outer Continental Shelf in a way that minimizes conflicts with existing traditional and historical fishing.

Haley Steinhauser
ESP Advisors
+1 562-991-3170
haley@espadvisor.com
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