The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Fisheries released its annual Status of the Stocks report for 2023, revealing a record low for fish stocks subject to overfishing.

The report assessed the 506 stocks managed by NOAA Fisheries, indicating the health of U.S. fisheries. Sustainable fisheries are crucial for the economy, recreation, and seafood supply.

In 2023, 94% of stocks were not overfished, and 82% were not subject to overfishing, showing slight improvement from 2022. Overfishing decreased to an all-time low of 21 stocks, and overfished stocks decreased to 47. Since 2000, 50 stocks have been rebuilt. The Fisheries Economics of the United States report for 2022 highlighted that U.S. fishing supported 2.3 million jobs and generated $321 billion in sales. Sustainable fisheries contribute significantly to the economy, providing jobs and a renewable seafood supply.


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“By ending overfishing and rebuilding stocks, we are strengthening the value of U.S. fisheries to the economy, our communities and marine ecosystems,” said NOAA Administrator Rick Spinrad, Ph.D. “Sustainably managed fisheries are important to the nation’s economy, and provide opportunities for commercial, recreational and subsistence fishing, while keeping a renewable supply of seafood for consumers.” 

Since 1996, NOAA Fisheries has reported on fisheries status, providing insight into management effectiveness.

NOAA Fisheries Assistant Administrator Janet Coit said, “Managing fisheries sustainably is an adaptive process that relies on sound science, innovative management approaches, effective enforcement and meaningful partnerships with robust public participation We continually adjust management measures in response to complex challenges including climate change, rebuilding stocks, ending overfishing and developing new forecasting tools to better predict ocean conditions.” 

Access the “Status of Stock 2023” report here.

Read the NOAA press release here.

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