PRESIDENT Donald Trump has ordered a major push on the growth of fish farming in the United States.
The coronavirus pandemic has badly hit the country’s conventional fishing activities and he sees aquaculture as one of the best means of protecting the nation’s future seafood supply chain and overall food security.
Trump has signed an executive order to increase America’s competitiveness in the seafood industry, which will instruct agencies to expand and accelerate sustainable production including the expansion and increased efficiency of aquaculture processes. He also announced the availability of $300 million to help seafood.
This order will explore United States future plans for aquaculture, including the breeding and harvesting of fish, shellfish and plant related seafood on land and in water. It is also intended to set up a federal taskforce to look at seafood imports and exports.
The President said in a statement that accompanied the order:
‘We will create new opportunities for American products in the global marketplace, including through continued support of our commercial fisheries and promotion of domestic aquaculture.’
Neil Jacobs, the acting administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said:
‘For generations, our coastal communities have taken great pride in delivering protein-rich seafood to dinner tables across the country and enabling access to our world class recreational fisheries. Together, we will work to distribute these funds as quickly as possible.’
The move has been broadly welcomed by US senators representing states with fishing and seafood sectors.
The White House said in a statement:
‘The President’s order will help solidify our nation’s food security, protect American jobs in the seafood industry, and create new jobs in the United States.’