Groundfish Industries of New England and Canada - A Comparative Economic Analysis
Lynch, Edward J.
Doherty, Richard M.
Draheim, George P.
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The American groundfish industry, centered in New England, far from participating in the general prosperity which has characterized the national economy in the post-World War II period, has been in a continual stage of decline during these years. The growing unprofitability of the groundfish industry and its effects on new investment, employment, and vessel construction, are matters of grave concern not only to those whose livelihood depends on the industry, but also to those concerned with the preservation, development, and utilization of the fishery in an area notably short of resource - based enterprises. The major reasons usually assigned for this decline are the decline of fish populations in local waters to lower but stable levels and the consequent high unit costs of operating, the costs and difficulties of marketing the product in competition with other food items, and the impact of foreign competition, principally from the Canadian Atlantic Provinces. This report is an attempt to qualify and quantify these and other causes, both internal and external, of the decline of the New England groundfish industry. In doing so, it will focus on the comparative performances of the industries of New and its chief competitor, the Canadian Atlantic Provinces. It deals with the economic, social, and biological factors which have affected both.