Although no longer as important as it was in the 16th and 17th centuries, fishing still contributes substantially to the food supply. Annual fish consumption in the Netherlands is 14.6 kg (32.2 lb) per person. In early 1996 there were 498 vessels in the Dutch fishing fleet, with a combined 153,694 GRT. About half of the fish catch is landed at the ports of Scheveningen and Ijmuiden. The Dutch fishing industry faces declining fish stocks and quota cuts from the EU that make profitability difficult because of excess capacity. In 2000, Dutch imports of fish products totaled $1,161 million and exports exceeded $1,344 million.
The total catch in 2000 was 495,804 tons, consisting primarily of mackerel, mussels, sardines, herring, plaice, and whiting. Shrimp, oysters, sole, and other saltwater fish were also caught.