Seafood - Fish and Shellfish
This page has information on fresh seafood including fish, shrimp, prawns, lobsters, crabs, scallops, clams, oysters, mussels, squid, and other delicacies.
Seafood is highly regarded for its flavor, color, and dietary benefits.
In 2006, Americans consumed 4.4 pounds of shrimp, per capita. The United States imported 1.23 billion pounds of shrimp in 2007, a 5.7 percent decline from 2006. Shrimp has been America's favorite seafood since 2001.
Americans now spend over $50 billion a year for fishery products, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
The National Restaurant Association reported that Americans spent 48 percent of their food budget eating out nearly six times each week in 2008.
Top seafood eaten by Americans include shrimp, canned tuna, pollock and tilapia. Seafood is generally low in fat, high in protein and nutrients, and high in Omega 3.
The USA imports roughly 84 percent of its seafood.
Oysters are prized worldwide for their delicate flavor and the pearls they produce. Eaten raw on the half shell, steamed, single fried, in stew, stuffing or any number of other dishes, oysters are among the favorite seafood dishes. Oysters grow in coastal areas, and are an important part of the ecosystem. They take well to aquaculture and are farmed for both food and pearls.
Eat Seafood at Least Twice a Week!
Dr Somerset, Senior Lecturer in Human Nutrition at Griffith University, has been studying the role of seafood in meeting the latest guidelines on healthy eating from the Australian Government's National Health & Medical Research Council (NHMRC).
"The health benefits of seafood are well established and internationally-recognised, particularly in relation to heart health," Dr Somerset said. "A switch to seafood and away from other less nutritionally valuable foods could significantly extend lifespan and quality of life for many Australians."
The swordfish is a large, open ocean saltwater fish.
Swordfish meat is tender, white and has a distinctive flavor, similar to wahoo.
Swordfish is typically served as grilled steaks.
The Dungeness Crab is named for the town of Dungeness, Washington, now called Old Town Dungeness, where the first commercial harvesting of the crab was done. The Dungeness Crab is the only important crab harvested in the state of Washington's territorial waters and was the first crab that was caught commercially along the Pacific Northwest Coast of the USA and Canada.
USA Seafood Consumption
U.S. per capita consumption of fish and shellfish was 15.8 pounds of edible meat in 2009. Fresh and frozen finfish accounted for 6.2 pounds while fresh and frozen shellfish consumption was 5.6 pounds per capita. Other forms of seafood included canned and cured products.
The average American ate 16.3 pounds of fish and shellfish in 2007, a one percent decline from the 2006 consumption figures of 16.5 pounds, according to a study by NOAA Fisheries Service.
At least half of the seafood imported to the U.S. is farmed. Aquaculture production in the rest of the world has expanded dramatically in the last 30 years and now supplies half of the world seafood demand, according to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization.
America's aquaculture industry, currently meets only a small part of the U.S. demand for seafood. Most of that is catfish. Domestically farmed marine seafood such as oysters, clams, mussels and salmon are also a small fraction of the total seafood consumed in the USA.
The U.S. continues to be ranked the third largest consumer of fish and shellfish, behind China and Japan.