WHEREAS, the Onslow County Board of Commissioners has been advised of relevant issues that would have a detrimental effect on the Onslow County’s commercial fishermen; and
WHEREAS, members of our local fishing community, some of whom are recreational fishermen and head boat operators familiar with the fishery of North Carolina, are greatly concerned about the foreign importing of shrimp; and
WHEREAS, the Onslow County Board of Commissioners is concerned with the following:
- The United States shrimp fishery throughout the Gulf of Mexico and the Southeast region is suffering an unprecedented catastrophic crisis that threatens its very existence and the many small family-owned businesses that are at the core of the economies of coastal communities.
- The United States’ imports of frozen warmwater shrimp nearly doubled from 2013 to 2021 to an unprecedented level of 1.8 billion pounds.
- The United States’ inventories of shrimp are overwhelmed; driving prices paid to shrimp fishermen to record lows that cannot cover the costs/expenses of a shrimp fishing trip, which are further exacerbated by historically high fuel prices and inflation.
- The consequences of the inundation of imported shrimp into our markets have caused significant revenue loss and loss of access to the shrimp fishery resource itself, for small family-owned fishing businesses and other supporting businesses.
WHEREAS, the Onslow County Board of Commissioners supports management of fishery issues that incorporates the whole body of available evidence and considers the biology of the fish, environmental conditions, prior management actions, and uncertainties about the data.
NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Onslow County Board of Commissioners reaffirms its unwavering commitment to North Carolina’s fishing industry, and requests that the appropriate agencies take the necessary steps to reduce and/or eliminate the continued harm to Onslow County’s recreational and commercial fishermen.
ADOPTED, this 16th day of October 2023.