The Economic Impact of Saltwater Fishing in Florida

Florida is the "Fishing Capital of the WorldExternal Website with more world record fish catches than any other state or country. From an economic perspective, Florida also leads all states in economic impacts for its marine recreational fisheries and has one of the top producing commercial fisheries in the country. Below are several statistics about Florida's recreational and commercial fishing industries and their economic role. 

Saltwater Recreational Fishing

Anglers

  • #1 in nation in saltwater anglers (2.4 million) – 2011 USFWS Survey, as compiled by Southwick Associates
  • 1,286,000: # of saltwater anglers that are residents
  • 716,000: # of saltwater anglers that are non-residents (Note: These estimates come from different sources and data pools and therefore do not equal each other)

 Licensing

  • 1,306,940 recreational saltwater licenses sold (resident and nonresident) in fiscal year 11/12
  • $25,445,403 in revenue generated from license sales
  • 1.8 million: number of saltwater anglers who are exempt from needing a license

Economics

  • Florida #1 in angler (fresh and saltwater) expenditures ($4.95 billion)
    • NY next with ($2.70 billion) – 2011 USFWS Survey information, as compiled by Southwick
  • Economic impact:
    • Saltwater recreational Fishing- $7.15 billion,

    • Supports: 65,212 jobs -U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; 2011 National Survey of Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife- Associated Recreation (values updated through Feb. 2013).
    • Alternative data from the Department of Commerce's Fisheries Economics of the United States 2009 External Website West Florida: supports 42,314 job; East Florida: supports 27,445 job; Total: 69,759 jobs
  • Eastern Florida: recreational anglers took 10 million fishing trips: the Department of Commerce's Fisheries Economics of the United States 2009 External Website
    • 5.4 million by private/rental boats,
    • 4.5 million from shore, and
    • 180,000 by party/charter boat. 
    • West Florida recreational anglers took 15.5 million trips: the Department of Commerce's Fisheries Economics of the United States 2009 External Website
      • 8.4 million private/rental,
      • 6.4 million by shore, and
      • 567,000 by party/charter boat.
  • Almost 26 percent of all trips taken on the Atlantic coast were made in east Florida.- NOAA Fisheries of the United States 2011 report
  • Almost 59% of all trips taken in the Gulf of Mexico were made in west Florida, followed by over 19% in Louisiana, more than 10% in Alabama, nearly 7% in Mississippi, and almost 5% in Texas. - NOAA Fisheries of the United States 2011 report

Nationwide

  • Anglers (salt and fresh) spent $41.8 billion on trips, equipment, licenses, and other items to support their fishing activities. - 2011 National Survey of Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife Associated Recreation
  • The average expenditure per angler (salt and fresh) was $1,261.- 2011 National Survey of Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife Associated Recreation
  • Anglers (salt and fresh) spent 57,594,000 days fishing – 2011 National Survey of Fishing, Hunting, and Wildlife Associated Recreation, USFWS

License sales

  • Over $25 million: Total revenue for all marine recreational fishing license sales.

How Florida has changed 

Comparing 2011 to 2006: – 2011 USFWS Survey information, as compiled by Southwick

  • Florida had 12% more anglers and 12% higher economic impact in 2011
  • Florida saltwater anglers increased by 20% and participation days increased by 58%
  • Total participation days for Florida increased by 24%

Records

IGFA

  • Florida #1 in number of International Game Fish records.
  • Florida accounts for 14.4% of all current IGFA records.

Total Florida Records (including retired records): 4,925

 Total Current Records (international): 6,776

Current Records from USA: 3,099

Current Records from Florida: 979

Top Five Countries(current records)

  1. USA – 3,099
  2. Australia – 449
  3. Japan – 343
  4. Mexico – 262
  5. New Zealand – 254

Top Five States(current records)

  1. Florida – 979
  2. California - 309
  3. Alaska – 297
  4. Texas – 143   
  5. Virginia - 123

Saltwater Commercial Fishing

Licensing

  • 12,752 Saltwater Products Licenses sold, 10,904 of which generated revenue for the state totaling $4 million in license sales - 2011/12 Fiscal Year
  • 1,595 wholesale dealers (1 license per person) and there were 5,834 retail dealer licenses sold. - 2011/12 FY
  • 12,752 saltwater products license's (Florida's commercial license) issued representing 10,242 commercial fishermen - 2011/12 FY

Economics

  • Florida 11th state in commercial landings with over 86 million pounds, and
  • Seventh in ex-vessel value at $170 million. - 2008 NOAA Fisheries External Website
  • Florida's commercial fishery second largest in nation generating $12 million in in-state sales
    • third in the nation with 64,744 jobs supported by commercial fishing. - Department of Commerce's Fisheries Economics of the United States 2009 

2011 Economic Contributions of the Florida Seafood (with imports)

 

Category

Jobs

Sales

Value Added

Commercial

Harvesters

6,817

$446 million

$186 million

Seafood

Processors and

Dealers

4,219

$679 million

$258 million

Importers

37,278

$10.2 billion

$3.1 billion

Seafood

Wholesalers and

Distributors

8,983

$1.0 billion

$507 million

Retail

15,043

$1.8 billion

$700 million

Total

72,341

$14.2 billion

$4.7 billion

Note: Estimates for the Florida Seafood Industry (2011) are provided by: NOAA, Office of Science and Technology: Fisheries Economics of the U.S. (2011).

 

2011 Economic Contributions of the Florida Seafood (without imports)

 

Category

Jobs

Sales

Value Added

Commercial

Harvesters

6,817

$446 million

$186 million

Seafood

Processors and

Dealers

548

$96 million

$36.4 million

Importers

0

$0

$0

Seafood

Wholesalers and

Distributors

464

$53.7 million

$26.3 million

Retail

2,721

$332.9 million

$127 million

Total

10,550

$928.9 million

$376.2 million

Note: Estimates for the Florida Seafood Industry (2011) are provided by: NOAA, Office of Science and Technology: Fisheries Economics of the U.S. (2011).

Landings Data

The top four species in dockside value harvested during 2010-11 in Florida were: 

  • Caribbean spiny lobster ($38.3 M),
  • stone crab (claws:  $25 M),
  • white shrimp ($16.9 M),
  • red grouper ($15.1 M)

The total commercial harvest of food shrimp in Florida was 17.4 M pounds (heads on; $34.7 M dockside value) in 2010-2011.

 2011 Florida commercial landings:

  • 233,421 commercial fishing trips totaled approximately 107 million (M) pounds of fish, crab, clams (wild harvest only, excludes aquaculture), lobster, shrimp, and other invertebrates worth over $223 M in dockside value. - 10/11 commercial landings data
  • Marine life landings (live fish and invertebrates for aquaria and other uses) from 5,601 commercial collecting trips in 2010-11 amounted to 8.2 M individual specimens worth nearly $2.9 M in dockside value.

Consumption

From the NOAA Fisheries of the United States 2011 report

  • Americans consumed 4.7 billion pounds of seafood in 2011, slightly less than the 4.9 billion pounds the previous year. The United States has surpassed Japan and is now second only to China in seafood consumption.
  • The average American ate 15.0 pounds of fish and shellfish in 2011, a decline from the 2010 figure of 15.8 pounds.
  • About 91 percent of the seafood consumed in the United States is imported, measured by edible weight, up 5 percent from 2010. However, a significant portion of this imported seafood is caught by American fishermen, exported overseas for processing, and then reimported to the United States.

Outdoor Recreation Statistics

Nationwide

2011 National Survey of Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife Associated Recreation

  • 90.1 million Americans, 38% of the U.S. population 16 years old and older, enjoyed some form of fishing, hunting or wildlife-associated recreation.
  • $145.0 billion in expenditures by hunters, anglers and wildlife-recreationists.
    • This equates to 1% of gross domestic product; meaning one out of every one hundred dollars of all goods and services produced in the U.S. is due to wildlife-related recreation.
  • Almost 37.4 million Americans participated in fishing, hunting or both sports in 2011.
    • These sportsmen and women spent $43.2 billion on equipment, $32.2 billion on trips, and $14.6 billion on licenses and fees, membership dues and contributions, land leasing and ownership, and plantings for hunting.
    • On average, each sportsperson spent $2,407 in 2011.

Salt and Fresh Fishing -Nationwide

  • As one of the most popular outdoor recreational activities in the United States, fishing attracted 33.1 million individuals 16 years old and older in 2011.
    • These anglers spent an average of 17 days fishing.
  • Trip-related spending on food, lodging, transportation and other trip costs totaled $21.8 billion, which is 52% of all angler spending.
  • Spending on equipment was $15.5 billion and comprised 37% of spending.
  • Magazines, membership dues and contributions, licenses, and other fishing expenditures accounted for 11% at $4.5 billion.
  • While participation in fishing increased from 2006 to 2011, total fishing-related expenditures declined 11%. Expenditures for fishing equipment such as rods, reels, poles, and tackle did not decline, however. All pre-2011 expenditures in this report were adjusted to be in 2011 dollars. 


FWC Facts:
Approximately 1.7 million acres of Florida's remaining natural areas have been invaded by nonindigenous plant species, which have degraded and diminished our ecosystem.

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