The Gulf of Mexico’s fishing and seafood tradition has especially deep roots in Mississippi. In fact, Biloxi was known as the “Seafood Capital of the World” at the beginning of the 20th century. Now, Mississippi Commercial Fisheries United (MSCFU) and its Executive Director, Ryan Bradley, have a plan to honor the state’s fishing heritage and strengthen its industry, with a timely focus on sustainability. MSCFU is now joining the Share the Gulf Coalition, which includes more than a dozen organizations and hundreds of chefs, restaurant owners, seafood industry representatives, and fishermen.
“Mississippi shellfish and seafood is generally harvested using the most ecologically sustainable methods we have globally, and targeting species that are really abundant and fresh,” Bradley explained. “We want to bring that sustainably sourced, healthy seafood to the public and help to expand opportunities for the fishermen who bring it to us—most of whom come from generations and generations of fishing.”
With its focus on promoting stewardship in the commercial fishing industry and fair access to Gulf seafood, MSCFU is an important addition to the Share the Gulf coalition as Mississippi’s commercial fishing sector can be underrepresented in discussions about fisheries laws.
“It’s great to see more commercial fishermen getting involved in the management and seafood arenas,” said Eric Brazer, Deputy Director of the Gulf of Mexico Reef Fish Shareholders’ Alliance, also a member of the Share the Gulf Coalition. “We’re excited that they’ve agreed to join Share the Gulf and bring their generations of expertise to this coalition.”
In that vein, Share the Gulf, MSCFU, the Gulf of Mexico Reef Fish Shareholders’ Alliance and the Charter Fisherman’s Association co-hosted a reception at Salute Italian & Seafood Restaurant in Gulfport, MS on April 18, 2018. Attended by Mississippi Congressional legislative staff, members of the Gulf of Mexico Fisheries Management Council and high-level representatives of the National Marine Fisheries Service, the event gave the coalition a chance to formally welcome MSCFU to its ranks and spread the message that fair and sustainable access to the Gulf’s fishery resources is a Mississippi tradition.
You can learn more about MSCFU by clicking here.