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Offshore fish farms key to boosting domestic seafood supply

US - The Bush Administration's National Offshore Aquaculture Act of 2007 holds great promise for securing the future of America's seafood supply.

If enacted by Congress, the proposed legislation will allow American business to participate in this $70-billion global industry while ensuring stringent environmental protections.

Commercial ventures would be allowed to operate fish and shellfish farms between three and 200 miles off our coasts in federal ocean waters. This marine area covers an amount of space that is larger than the combined land area of the lower 48 states.

Aquaculture makes good economic sense. Raising fish and shellfish for food has become a global reality. As other countries have continued to develop aquaculture industries, the United States has fallen behind, left to export our technology and investments overseas.

With a seafood trade deficit somewhere between $8 billion and $10 billion, the United States relies on imported fish and shellfish to meet market demand, and that reliance will rise unless we increase our ability to produce seafood at home.

Source: Gloucester Daily Times

the Fish Site Editor

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