For more than 300 years, Maine's fishing industry has been the foundation of not just our culture, but of Maine's economy as well. The Maine Coast Fishermen's Association identifies and fosters ways to restore the fisheries of the Gulf of Maine and sustain Maine's historic fishing communities for future generations.
MCFA works with decision-making bodies at the state, regional and federal level to create policies to rebuild the Gulf of Maine's marine life, to keep small-boat fishermen on the water, and to ensure that fishing is a part of the fabric of Maine for generations to come.
Maine Coast Fishermen's Association is the voice of Maine's community-based fishermen.
The Maine Coast Fishermen's Association is currently working on:
The concerns of the inshore fishing communities of Maine have often been overlooked in the decision making process which has led to a continued decline of groundfish fishing in Maine. MCFA will work with Maine fishermen in developing advocacy positions and provide opportunities for the fishermen to lend their perspective to policy development.
Port Clyde Community Groundfish Sector
MCFA works to support the operations of the Port Clyde Community Groundfish Sector and all fishermen involved. The sector system allows fishermen to work together to harvest a combined allocation based on their combined fishing history. Sectors allow for increased flexibility in business planning and ensure that fishermen stay within annual catch limits.
Northern Shrimp play an important role in the businesses of many Maine community-based fishermen and have been targeted for generations by the Maine fleet. Over the past three years we have again seen massive overfishing of the stock, far beyond scientific recommendations, and recent science is suggesting that Northern Shrimp on the path to collapse once again.
As current management measures have proven to be inadequate to protect both the resource and the fishermen who rely on it, we are working with fishermen to help develop new measures to control fishing effort but also ensure access for the fishermen who rely on this fishery.
Sustainability Research Projects
The success of Maine community-based fishermen is tied directly to their ability to access a healthy and vibrant resource and make money while doing it. The ecosystem in the Gulf of Maine has been in decline for the last 50 years and it is our goal to have a healthier ecosystem and resource for the next generation of fishermen. We are working on projects with our partners at the Island Institute, The Nature Conservancy, and the Gulf of Maine Resource Center to reduce the fuel usage on boats, avoid non-target species, and access areas previously closed to commercial fishermen.
Watch overview video