Americans are eating more seafood and it’s a trend that shows no sign of slowing. A breakdown of the lastest data in the “Fisheries of the United States” report by the National Fisheries Institute shows that Americans ate 19.2 pounds of fish and shellfish on average in 2019, an increase of two-tenths of a pound over the previous year.

Shrimp remained as the number one favorite with Americans eating 4.7 pounds per capita.  Salmon held on to the second spot at 3.1 pounds, up more than a half-pound from three years ago. Canned tuna ranked number 3 for seafood favorites at 2.2 pounds, with Alaska pollock and tilapia rounding out the top five. All of those showed increases in consumption. Rounding out the top 10 were cod, catfish, crab, Pangasius and clams.

NFI,  the largest U.S. seafood trade group, added that the most recent figures suggest that U.S. consumers also are diversifying their seafood choices beyond the usual favorites.

And according to all indications, the numbers will likely be much higher when they measure seafood consumption in 2020 when Americans opted for fish and shellfish in droves during the Covid pandemic due to its proven health benefits.

But while consumption is on the rise, it’s still below the  daily USDA dietary recommendation of eating two four ounce servings each week.  Each American would need to eat 26 pounds of seafood per year to reach that goal.

And where in the world do they eat the most seafood?  Based on a comparison of 158 countries, it’s the Maldives in the Indian Ocean where people eat nearly 366 pounds per capita. For the least seafood, the landlocked countries of Afghanistan and Tajikistan each show seafood consumption levels at well below a quarter of a pound.

 





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