Cammack Introduces Bipartisan Bill to Protect Aquaculture Industry

Cammack Introduces Bipartisan Bill to Protect Aquaculture Industry

Jackson Bakich
Jackson Bakich
|
August 9, 2023

Representative Kat Cammack (R-FL) has introduced her newest bipartisan legislation, the Supporting Equity for Aquaculture and Seafood (SEAS) Act.

This bill looks to reform current federal agricultural policy to ensure that the aquaculture and seafood industries receive fair treatment within the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

Rep. Cammack’s legislation, introduced alongside Representative Frank Pallone (D-NJ), requires the USDA Secretary to “give the same consideration to aquaculture producers as animal agriculture producers” as well as provide “adequate and fair” funding levels across both industries through grants under the USDA.

Aquaculture is a growing industry that includes the cultivation of fish and shellfish in controlled environments. Despite the industry’s growth and USDA’s recommendation to eat at least eight ounces of seafood per week, aquaculture is not receiving equal funding compared to its land-based counterparts.

According to Rep. Cammack’s press release, the United States imports over 70% of its seafood, and more than half of that figure comes from foreign aquaculture.

Funding American aquaculture is a national security concern, says Cammack.

"When it comes to food security, we know our national security depends on our ability to produce our own food supply. The Sunshine State is a leader in aquaculture production and it's imperative that we continue this momentum to ensure Americans have safe, sustainable, and affordable seafood across the state and nation. I'm pleased to join Rep. Pallone in ensuring critical congressional support for USDA's aquaculture programs," said Cammack.

Rep. Pallone would add that the SEAS Act will aid “food insecurity” and “create new economic opportunities.”

"Investing in aquaculture will help ensure all Americans have access to safe and affordable seafood nationwide. When we increase the consumption of American seafood, we can alleviate food insecurity, create new economic opportunities, and reduce our food system’s impact on the environment," Rep. Pallone said. "The SEAS Act will help us meet the growing demand for American seafood and provides critical Congressional support for USDA's aquaculture programs. My bill makes critical investments in our aquaculture and seafood industries now, so that our food system is resilient in the future."

Rep. Cammack serves as the Co-Chair of the Aquaculture Caucus.

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Jackson Bakich

Jackson Bakich

Born in Orlando but raised in Lake County, Florida, Jackson Bakich is currently a senior at Florida State University. Growing up in the sunshine state, Bakich co-hosted the political talk radio show "Lake County Roundtable" (WLBE) and was a frequent guest for "Lake County Sports Show" (WQBQ). Currently, he is the Sports Editor of the FSView and the co-host of "Tomahawk Talk" (WVFS), a sports talk radio program covering Florida State athletics in Tallahassee.

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