Seafood Waste

The United States seafood supply is deeply interconnected with global seafood production, and with the energy and water systems needed for production, processing, and transport. Demand for seafood is expected to grow; the U.S. government advises higher seafood consumption for nutritional reasons. But wild caught seafood supplies are threatened and harvests have declined, while further increasing aquaculture will require greater energy, water, and feed resource use. At the same time, nearly half of the U.S. seafood supply is lost or wasted. Increasing efficiencies and reducing waste across the seafood supply is paramount.

This research project is motivated by the unnecessary strain placed on water, energy, and other resources used in supplying seafood, resulting from inefficient resource use and waste. The inefficiencies also lead to unnecessarily spending of billions of dollars annually and losing vast amounts of one of the healthiest protein sources.

We aim to identify practical ways to reduce energy and water use in the U.S. seafood supply by:

  1. Measuring energy and water use in seafood production and identifying reduction strategies
  2. Measuring energy and water use in seafood waste and identifying reduction strategies
  3. Integrating findings, developing recommendations, and communicating with general and targeted audiences

This research focuses on selected supply chains for seven of the most-consumed seafood products in the U.S., starting with international origins as appropriate: farmed marine shrimp (Thailand), wild sockeye salmon (Alaska), farmed Atlantic salmon (Norway), wild tuna (landing in Ecuador), farmed catfish (U.S.), farmed pangasius (Vietnam), and wild pollock (Alaska).

The research team includes Drs. Roni Neff, Dave Love and Jillian Fry from  Johns Hopkins University, Drs. Lekelia Jenkins, Stacia Dreyer and Jesse Senko from Arizona State University and Drs. Mark Brown, Frank Asche and Jim Anderson from University of Florida. As we work to understand the best opportunities for resource (and cost) saving, we will seek input and information from a wide variety of experts.