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KAF hits out at proposed flounder catch cuts in USA

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Keep America Fishing (KAF) says a move to reduce flounder quotas would be a major blow to the industry.

A move to radically reduce recreational fishing’s summer flounder quota would be a major blow to the fishing tackle trade, says Keep America Fishing, the consumer voice of the American Sportfishing Association.

The National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the Mid-Atlantic Regional Fishery Management Council are considering a 40% cut to the quota, citing declining stocks and the recreational sector going over its 2016 quota.

But, says KAF, the decision would be devastating to local economies and coastal communities.

According to KAF, more than 10,000 jobs depend on the recreational fishery for summer flounder, which generates over $1 billion in sales.

Describing the measure as ‘rushed’ and ‘potentially catastrophic’, KAF is urging members to lobby the NOAA to register their opposition on the grounds that the proposed cut is unnecessary.

Arguing that the decision is based on an outdated stock assessment from 2013, KAF has asked the NOAA to wait for a ‘desperately needed’ new stock assessment – expected in early 2017 – that will provide a more accurate indication of the true health of the fishery.

“Knowing the history of this fishery and how important it is to the fishermen of the mid-Atlantic region, the proposed reduction is unnecessary and reactionary,” says KAF.

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