Stronger America Through Seafood announced Monday that a majority of voters support establishing a U.S. aquaculture industry to increase sustainable seafood production. A survey by the organization found that two-thirds of voters would feel more favorable towards a member of Congress who established pathways for offshore aquaculture.

Among voters, 84%t support establishing a clear, predictable pathway for U.S. aquaculture when learning many American companies build aquaculture operations abroad, and 86% believe it’s important to expand U.S. aquaculture when learning the U.S. imports most of its seafood.

In response, Sarah Brenholt of the organization says, “Now is the time for Congress to act and put in place federal policies that would establish an aquaculture industry in U.S. federal waters.”

Stronger America Through Seafood supports the Advancing the Quality and Understanding of American Aquaculture Act. The bill would:

  • Uphold existing environmental standards while providing regulatory certainty and clarity to the industry;
  • Include a set of national standards to guide development of offshore aquaculture, and aquaculture management plans that implement those standards on a regional scale;
  • Include a national plan to identify and establish areas particularly well-suited for aquaculture;
  • Establish an Office of Marine Aquaculture within NOAA, which would be charged with coordinating the federal permitting process;
  • Establish a permit through NOAA that would give an individual the security of tenure necessary to secure financing for an aquaculture operation; and
  • Fund research and extension services to support innovation and the growth of aquaculture in the United States.

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