Maine’s commercially harvested marine resources topped $600 million in overall value in 2015, according to preliminary data from the Maine Department of Marine Resources.
The total, $631,768,531, reflects an all-time high and an increase of more than $33 million over the previous record set in 2014.
The largest single increase in value was in Maine’s lobster fishery. The fishery saw the overall landed value jump by more than $37 million and the average per pound value increase by more than 10 percent, going from $3.70 per pound in 2014 to $4.09 per pound in 2015.
The overall value of Maine’s lobster fishery was again by far the highest at $495,433,635. When factoring in bonuses paid to harvesters as reported by 11 of Maine’s 19 lobster co-ops, the overall landed value of Maine’s lobster fishery reached $510,680,048.
2015 marked the fourth year in a row and the fourth year ever in which Maine lobster harvesters landed over 120 million pounds, with landings totaling 121,083,418 pounds.
Maine’s softshell clam industry retained its second place standing in overall value at $22,536,086, a record for the fishery. The jump in value came on the strength of a 47 cent per pound increase over 2014. At $2.46 per pound, 2015 landings netted harvesters a 23 percent increase in per pound value over 2014 despite a drop in landings of one million pounds.
At $2,171 per pound, Maine’s elver fishery was by-far the most lucrative of Maine’s commercial fisheries on a per pound basis. Despite a season in which landings were well below the state quota due to a cold, dry spring that slowed elver migration and challenged harvesting, overall value increased by nearly $3 million. At $11,422,381, the elver fishery was Maine’s fourth most lucrative behind herring at $13 million.
DMR officials consider 2015 a continuation of the successful rebuilding effort for Maine’s scallop fishery despite a decline in value and meat pounds landed.
More landings data can be found at: http://www.maine.gov/dmr/comfish.htm
source: Maine Department of Marine Resources