United States - Fishing

The 2000 commercial catch was 4.74 million tons. Food fish make up 78% of the catch, and nonfood fish, processed for fertilizer and oil, 22%.

Alaska pollock, with landings of 1,182,438 tons, was the most important species in quantity among the commercial fishery landings in the United States in 2000. Other leading species by volume included Gulf menhaden, 591,434 tons; Atlantic menhaden, 207,122 tons; Pacific cod, 240,635 tons; North Pacific hake, 205,351 tons; and American cupped oyster, 197,072 tons. In 2000, exports of fish products totaled $3,055 million (third after Norway and China).

Aquacultural production consists mostly of catfish, oysters, trout, and crayfish. In 1998, there were 1,810 aquacultural farms in the United States.

Pollution is a problem of increasing concern to the US fishing industry; dumping of raw sewage, industrial wastes, spillage from oil tankers, and blowouts of offshore wells are the main threats to the fishing grounds. Overfishing is also a threat to the viability of the industry in some areas, especially Alaska.

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