Seafood Source: Murkowski, Sullivan introduce bill to create “Wild USA Seafood” label for domestic-caught seafood

Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan, both Republican U.S. senators from Alaska, have introduced a bill to establish a “Wild USA Seafood” label for all seafood caught in U.S. waters.

The senators said the bill, the “Wild USA Seafood Act of 2023,” will help the U.S. domestic seafood industry promote its wild-caught seafood – including fish, crustaceans, and aquatic plants harvested in U.S. waters.

“Alaska’s seafood is the best in the world – and I’m proud to lead on this effort that would ensure consumers know their food is being harvested by hardworking American fishermen,” Murkowski said. “Consumers want to know where their food comes from – and by creating a specific label allowing wild seafood, like Alaskan salmon caught in Bristol Bay, wild kelp harvested in Southeast [Alaska], or pollock caught in the Bering Sea, the option to be labeled as ‘Wild USA Seafood,’ we’re ensuring consumers know they are purchasing the highest-quality seafood from the best-managed fisheries in the world.”

Sullivan, who recently pushed for a ban on Russian seafood in the U.S., said the label will help let consumers know where their seafood is coming from.

“Americans deserve to have this information, and a labeling standard for ‘Wild USA Seafood’ will help them choose the best seafood products in the world,” he said.

The Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute (ASMI), a government-funded marketing board that conducts public relations and promotional activities for the state of Alaska’s seafood, welcomed the new bill as a way to improve sales of domestic seafood.

“Our research tells us that ‘product of USA’ and ‘wild-caught’ are two of the top five U.S. consumer motivations for choosing seafood over other proteins,” ASMI Communications Director Greg Smith said in a release. “Wild-caught Alaska and other U.SA. seafood is the gold standard for sustainable management, and American fishermen, processors, retailers, and consumers will benefit when the U.S. origin of our seafood products is on the label regardless of where processing occurs.”

Association of Genuine Alaska Pollock Producers (GAPP) CEO Craig Morris told SeafoodSource his organization also conducted consumer surveys in order to gauge how best to promote its "wild Alaska pollock" campaign.

By:  By Chris Chase
Source: Seafood Source