Maine Fisheries Landings Approached $427 Million

ELLSWORTH — Maine fishermen landed more than 270.2 million pounds of fin- and shellfish last year and pocketed some $426.8 million.

The total landings were just a drop in the bucket compared with the amount of seafood that crossed the docks in the nation’s number one fishing state, Alaska, but the landed value of Maine’s catch placed it third among all states.

According to a report released by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) last week, Fisheries of the United States 2011, U.S. seafood landings were the highest in 17 years.

Commercial fishermen landed some 10.1 billion pounds of fish and shellfish last year valued at about $5.3 billion. That was a 22.6 percent increase in landings and a 17.4 percent increase in value compared with 2010.

The highest volume of landings cnewsame from Alaska, where fishermen landed 5.4 billion pounds of fish worth $1.9 billion, also the top figure.

Maine’s landings were eighth in volume nationwide, but the largest by a good measure in the five-state New England region. Massachusetts had the second largest landings — about 256.6 million pounds — but the $570.7 million value of those landings was the by far the largest in the Northeast.

Last year, New Bedford led the nation with landings worth about $368.8 million, up some $63 million from 2010 and a record for the Massachusetts port. The principal contributor to that bounty was the New Bedford scallop fleet.

With landings of some 19 million pounds, almost exclusively lobster, Stonington ranked 21st among ports in terms of the value of those landings — about $48 million.

Dutch Harbor, in Alaska, landed the most fish of any U.S. port last year — some 706 million pounds. With that huge volume, it ranked second behind New Bedford in terms of value.

For more maritime news, pick up a copy of The Ellsworth American.

Stephen Rappaport

Stephen Rappaport

Waterfront Editor at The Ellsworth American
Stephen Rappaport has lived in Maine for nearly 30 years. A lifelong sailor, he spends as much time as possible messing about in boats. [email protected]