Commercial Fisheries in the USA

When the average person sits down at a restaurant and orders seafood, they may not put much thought into where it comes from. As a commercial fisherman, however, your livelihood depends on knowing exactly where the fish are biting. The United States is home to a number of well-stocked commercial fisheries, accommodating a vast array of different commercial and fishing operations. If you are interested in starting such a business–or if your commercial fishing outfit is considering expanding its offerings–you will want to make sure that you have all of the required state and federal permits.

commercial fisheries in the usa

The Purpose of Commercial Fisheries

Commercial fishing employs an estimated 60 million people across the globe. Every year, more than $150 billion changes hands in the global seafood exchange, cementing commercial and industrial fishing as cornerstones to the global economy. These businesses and individual livelihoods are supported thanks to commercial fisheries, many of which are in the United States.

Every major coastal region of the U.S. is home to commercial fishing areas. Different geographies are stocked with different fish, though some species are available in more than one region. One commonality for fishermen from Maine to California, however, is that they must obtain the correct permits to commercially fish for their desired catch.

Having the Right Permits

Fishing permits are issued at both the state and federal level. If you are fishing in state waters, which typically encompass the area from zero to three nautical miles from shore, you will need the appropriate state license. Federal waters are often everything beyond state waters up to a point of 200 nautical miles from land. 

Permits often break down to individual species. For example, if you are fishing for salmon in federal waters in Alaska, there is a specific permit for that. If you are seeking a federal permit or a state license, traditionally, there will be some paperwork to complete. You will need to locate the right application, fill it out completely, and send it via mail with an accompanying check for the required fee. Fortunately, there are private services such as ours at the Commercial Fishing Permits Center that allow you to take care of this process online, which can save you and your business valuable time.

commercial fisheries in the usa

Submit Your Application Online Today with Our Help

On our website’s top navigation, you will see a row of drop down menus for each geographic fishing region in the United States. Within those sub-navigations, you will see a further breakdown of all the different types of permit application forms that we offer. If you need a commercial fishing permit in the U.S., we’ve got you covered. If you have any questions about how we can help your business, contact us today. For our customers’ peace of mind, we also utilize an encrypted portal for the transmission of your private data, so you can trust us with your business.

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