From canned tuna to cod, the top ten most consumed seafood items by Americans are a very familiar group that feeds a growing market, according to recent data released by the federal government that found overall seafood volume netting 4.65 billion pounds. The data also showed American seafood companies exported a record 3.3 billion pounds valued at $5.4 billion.
Officials from the National Fisheries Institute (NFI) said the data shows the importance of the U.S. seafood market, which is now the second largest in the world. “Strong export numbers confirm that our customers in Europe and Asia value sustainable and healthy American seafood products,” said John Connelly, NFI’s president. “The seafood sector is growing in the volume and value of seafood we can provide to consumers here and abroad.”
While America’s palate may not be as adventurous as some when it comes to seafood, experts say that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
Indeed, Jennifer McGuire, NFI’s manager of nutrition communications, said the continued popularity of mild white fish, like Alaska Pollock, and other species that are often considered “starter-fish, is actually good news. Whether it’s in tacos or on the grill, swapping in seafood for the usual proteins will mean significant public health benefits.”