The seafood industry faces many challenges and opportunities. The global marketplace, trade policies, safety regulations, energy costs, food security concerns, waste handling and limited seafood supplies are issues that require evaluation and the development of solutions, where needed. The Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant Consortium (MASGC) helps commercial and recreational fishermen overcome these challenges. MASGC also helps the public make seafood decisions based on nutritional benefits, product quality and management practices.
MASGC uses its research, outreach and education capabilities to improve the safety of seafood, educate consumers on choosing nutritious and sustainable products and expand sustainable practices for seafood harvest and aquaculture production.
Most of the Gulf of Mexico’s economically important marine fish and invertebrate species are heavily exploited. The continued presence of normal and healthy population numbers of living marine resources relies upon healthy and sufficient estuarine and coastal habitats and ecosystems. The United States has witnessed the decline of many of its major fisheries while seafood consumption is on the rise, resulting in a seafood trade deficit of $8 billion per year.