Fishing resources

Maine’s commercially exploited marine resources reach historic value

May 11, 2022

In the wake of a global pandemic, the overall value earned by anglers in 2021 jumped more than $365 million to a new historic value, according to data from the Maine Department of Marine Resources.

2021 is now a year of historic value for commercial fishermen in Maine. Data recently released by the Maine Department of Marine Resources indicates that the overall value earned by anglers in 2021 jumped more than $365 million and surpassed the previous overall record of $733,691,455 set by $150 million. in 2016.

The numbers, which reflect the strength of a historic year for lobster and the rebound in the elver fishery, hit a record high of $890,668,873, according to the now available report. Maine is considered one of the most important commercial fishing states in the country, due to its lobster fishing industry.

“The hard work of Maine’s fishers, aquaculturists and traders has once again resulted in tremendous economic benefits for our state,” said Maine Governor Janet Mills. “In the wake of a global pandemic that has tested every link in the supply chain, the men and women who harvest, grow, process and sell Maine seafood continue to ensure that that the highest quality products are brought to market.”

The report also notes that “all but two fisheries with reportable landings saw an increase in value per pound in 2021 compared to 2020. The largest increase paid to anglers was in the elver fishery, which saw an increase from $1,306 per pound, from $525 per pound in 2020 to $1,831 per pound in 2021.”

According to the Maine Department of Marine Resources, “lobster was again by far the most valuable commercial fishery, with a landed value of $730,596,022 in 2021, based on a price per pound of 6.71 $ at the dock. Lobster fishers earned $2.50 a pound more in 2021 than in 2020. The most recent reported total was an increase from the February report due to ongoing audits of landings reports.

For the second year in a row, clams were the second most valuable species, with anglers pocketing more than $25 million. Here is some additional information available in the report:

  • Maine elver anglers earned $16,681,103, placing Maine’s elver fishery third in 2021.
  • Maine-grown oysters were the fourth most valuable harvested commodity at more than $10 million, thanks to a 12-cent per pound increase in value.

The new data confirms that “despite a drop in landings of almost 5 million pounds from the previous year, Menhaden, a popular bait for the Maines lobster industry, brought in anglers $9.5 million. , the result of a 65% increase in value per pound. The overall value ranked Menhaden as the fifth most valuable fishery in 2021.”

A 51% increase in value per pound over 2020 made Maine scallops the sixth most valuable Maine fishery in 2021. Anglers earned a total of $8.3 million, a jump of more than $1.3 million over the previous year.

“The steady increase in value per pound reflects the strong demand for products harvested here in coastal Maines waters,” said Patrick Keliher, commissioner of the Maine Department of Marine Resources. “This industry has once again proven that dedication to quality pays off and that the best seafood in the world comes from Maine.”

Reports for all species can be found at