I’m shipping scallops this week, and POSSIBLY next week thanks to a number of Maine boats participating in the Northern Gulf of Maine (NGOM) scallop fishery.
The Northern Gulf of Maine scallop management area was established in 2011 to preserve small boat fishermen’s access to the Federal scallop resource. Fishermen must stay within a defined area (see graphic), they’re limited to 200 pounds per trip and can only fish one 10 foot dredge.
Unfortunately there’s a bit of work to be done in terms of keeping this area sustainable. Although the small boats are limited to 70,000 pounds, the large boats can take an unlimited amount of scallops from this supposedly protected-area. In fact as of April 8 the large boats had taken approximately 150,000 pounds from the area. I had argued this affront to fisheries management principles should prevent the Marine Stewardship Council from certifying the fishery as sustainable, but unfortunately my objection was dismissed.
A number of us are working to improve the management of this fishery, and I’m confident we’ll be successful in the end. But for now, the thing for you to know is ORDER FAST if you want fresh, delicious scallops!