Got Milk? – Beef – It’s What’s for Dinner! – Pork – The Other White Meat – The Incredible, Edible Egg— those are familiar brand slogans, all backed by producers who speak with a unified voice.

Seafood could soon be among them.

Reviving a dormant National Seafood Council is gaining steam among industry members, especially as Covid-19 upends markets.

About a year ago, Seafood Source reports the Marine Fisheries Advisory Committee brought up the idea to restart the council. MAFAC is a federal advisory committee to the Secretary of Commerce and NOAA Fisheries.

Since then, the idea has met with lots of enthusiasm, and MAFAC has formed an 11-member task force to move forward.

A National Seafood Council was created by the U.S. Fish and Seafood Promotion Act in 1987. It ran for five years before running out of money.  Most other food producers, from livestock to fruits and dairy,  have some sort of marketing board backed by industry dollars to promote their products.

MAFAC members agreed that if any food could benefit from more consumer education, it’s seafood.

At a July meeting, MAFAC agreed their first task is to define what direction a promotional council could take. Another is checking the language in the 1987 Act to make sure it’s meeting the needs of today.

The core mission would be simple – to get Americans to eat more seafood. A National Seafood Council could help with marketing, research, and education of all U.S. fish and shellfish, both farmed and wild.

It also could improve consumer confidence by allaying concerns about seafood safety and sustainability,   and promoting its many proven health benefits.

 

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