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Part I Statistics and main indicators

  1. Country brief
  2. General geographic and economic indicators
  3. FAO Fisheries statistics

The Profile (2019)

    Additional information

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    2. Publications
    3. Meetings & News archive

    Part I Statistics and main indicators

    Part I of the Fishery and Aquaculture Country Profile is compiled using the most up-to-date information available from the FAO Country briefs and Statistics programmes at the time of publication. The Country Brief and the FAO Fisheries Statistics provided in Part I may, however, have been prepared at different times, which would explain any inconsistencies.

    Country briefPrepared: September 2019

    Capture fisheries and aquaculture occur in many of the coastal waters/Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), rivers and lakes of the United States of America (USA) and fishing also takes place in the EEZs of other nations and on the high seas (e.g. tuna catches in the Western Central Pacific). Since 2011, US total capture production has been quite stable between 4.9 and 5.1 million tonnes despite catch fluctuations of the two main species (Alaska pollock and Gulf menhaden) which are caught in great quantities in the Pacific and the Atlantic Ocean, respectively.

    Inland commercial fisheries are limited to the Great Lakes and a few major rivers and produced 16 574 tonnes in 2017. In 2017, total employment was estimated to be 169950 people.

    There are 25 000 - 27 000 estimated commercial fishing vessels licensed to operate within the US EEZ. The USA also reported 652 vessels authorized to operate in high seas in 2009, with total crew of about 3 700. Internationally, the US Navy and the US Coast Guard have engaged in training of West African countries in the areas of maritime security and fisheries enforcement.

    Aquaculture production declined gradually after reaching a record-high level of 607600 tonnes in 2004 to less than 400000 tonnes in 2011. Since then, it remained quite stable between 420000 and 440000 tonnes. Despite the continuous plunge in production volume after 2004 due mainly to the shrinkage in channel catfish farming scale, the total aquaculture value stayed at a level comparable to that of 2004 (USD 922 million) or higher, reaching just over USD 1.2 billion in 2017.

    Freshwater aquaculture is still dominated by channel catfish (60 percent), followed by crayfish (26 percent) and rainbow trout (8 percent). Mariculture produces mainly shellfish (90 percent) plus finfish (9 percent) and marine shrimp (1 percent). Regardless of the production reduction, USA remains strong in technology development and innovations in aquaculture and related fields (such as off-shore marine cage culture) and is an important source of foreign investment in aquaculture development in many developing countries.

    In 2016, FAO estimated US per capita apparent consumption of food fish at around 22 kg/year live-weight equivalent. The majority of the seafood consumed in the USA originates from imports.

    In 2017, the USA was the leading importer of fish and fishery products, with imports valued at USD 21.6 billion and the fifth major exporter, with exports worth USD 6.1 billion.
    General geographic and economic indicators

    Key statistics

    Country area9 831 510km2FAOSTAT. Official data, 2013
    Land area9 147 420km2FAOSTAT. Official data, 2013
    Inland water area684 090km2Computed. Calculated, 2013
    Population - Est. & Proj.334.496millionsFAOSTAT. Official data, 2019
    Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) area10 566 290km2VLIZ
    GDP (current US$)20 544 343millionsWorld Bank. 2018
    GDP per capita (current US$)62 795US$World Bank. 2018
    Agriculture, forestry, and fishing, value added0.92% of GDPWorld Bank. 2017

    Source: FAO Country Profile

    FAO Fisheries statistics

    Updated 2019The Profile

    This country profile provides statistics and indicators produced through FAO’s Statistics programmes, supplemented with information derived from national and other sources and valid at the time of compilation.

    Full text of the Fisheries and Aquaculture Country Profile available at /fishery/docs/DOCUMENT/fcp/en/FI_CP_US.pdf

    Additional information

    FAO Thematic data bases

    Meetings & News archive


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