2008 Annual Report
Gulf of Maine Research Institute

Community Overview

Gulf of Maine fisheries face a number of environmental and economic challenges. GMRI worked to help them adapt, thrive and emerge as 21st century sustainability models. Our community initiatives provided information, tools, and training to enable fishing communities to participate more constructively in the fishery management process, make sense of changing rules, and develop new ways of doing business.

We worked with all parts of the supply chain to improve long-term profitability and sustainability of the region’s seafood. We launched our Gulf of Maine Responsibly Harvested branding program to enable New England consumers to easily identify local seafood, as well as build a strong place-based identity for products marketed outside the region. We verified favorites such as cod, haddock, lobster, northern shrimp, pollock, and scallops. We connected fishermen, distributors, chefs, and dining service providers hoping to raise consumer awareness of and demand for plentiful but under-appreciated species, such as mackerel, whiting, and redfish.

We continued our efforts to support New England’s groundfish harvesting sectors during their first fishing season under the new rules. We helped these new non-profits get organized and access federal start-up assistance. We shared lessons learned during the transition with fishery management councils in the Northwest, West Coast, and mid-Atlantic regions. We extended our outreach efforts to include monkfish fishermen, offering them chance to begin learning and voicing perspectives about management changes on the horizon in this important fishery.

GMRI has managed the Marine Resource Education Program (MREP) since 2005, preparing hundreds of New England fishermen to navigate the complexities of fishery science and management. Today, MREP is highly acclaimed as one of the few fishery outreach programs that are actually working. Other regions have taken notice and our team has been invited to explore transferring the program.

We surveyed the lobster fishery to gain insights on business viability. We convened interested parties to discuss offshore ocean energy, ocean planning for multiple uses, and the economic potential of marine innovation. Our Sea State lecture series connected interested community members with candidate’s marine policies during the last election and explored potential climate change impacts on our oceans.

Spotlight on Community

Roll over the images below to view a sample of the research underway at GMRI. Click on an image to learn more about the project.

  • Sectors
  • Monkfish
  • Training & Workshops
  • Sustainable Seafood
  • FAST

Deepening Our Impact

Seafood Supply Chain Roundtable

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