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Fish and Fish Product Import Provisions of the Marine Mammal Protection Act

September 16, 2017


The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), has passed the law on Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), effective beginning on January 1, 2017. The law prohibits the importation of commercial fish and fish products into the U.S., if they have been caught with commercial fishing technologies outside of United States standards, which can lead to the mortality or serious injury of ocean mammals.


According to the law, the harvesting nations of listed fishes and fish products from fisheries should be certified by NMFS to ensure that they have set up the standards and enacted the related law to meet U.S. regulatory requirements in commercial fishing, by January 1, 2022 - within 5 years of the enactment.


NMFS published the List of Foreign Fisheries (LOFF) to implement regulations under the MMPA and the agency is receiving public comments regarding the list by October 23, 2017. The target fishes, fish products and fishing methods listed on the LOFF are as follows:


Whitebait (trawling net, midwater trawl); Krill (trawling net, midwater trawl); Toothfish (longline fishery), Flatfish (gillnet); Snapper (gillnet); Squid (trawl, pound net); Amberjack (pound net), Angler fish (trawl); Flatfish(gillnet, stow nets); Tuna (longline fishery, purse seine); Anchovy (stow net, trawl); Crab (coastal fish pot, gillnet); Cod (Trawl); Pacific Saury (gillnet); Mackerel (purse seine); Octopus (longline fishery); Small octopus (longline fishery, fish traps); Shrimp (gillnet, purse seine); Hairtail (stow net, longline fishery), Croake (gillnet, purse seine); Filefish (purse seine, gillnet, trawl, stow net); Conger eel (fish traps, longline fishery); Mussels (aquaculture); plaice (stow net, purse seine); Horse Mackerel (purse seine); Herring (bottom-trawling); Gray mullet (gillnet, longline fishery); Cuttlefish(stow net, trawl, gillnet); Japanese Spanish mackerel (trawl); Stingray (gillnet, trawl, longline); Tongue fishes (gillnet); Cod (pound-nets, gillnet, longline), Yellowtail(gillnet, pound-nets); Butterfish (trawl, gillnet); Rockfish (aquaculture, longline); Greenling (longline), Sand lance (pound-nets, gillnet); Skates (longline); Bass (gillnet) Webfoot octopus (trawl); Anglerfish (gillnet, fish traps); Snow crab (gillnet); Fan mussel (aquaculture, hand collection)[A1] 





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