Governor Jindal Signs Bills to Strengthen Louisiana’s Seafood Industry

June 21, 2010


BATON ROUGE – Today, Governor Bobby Jindal announced that he has signed two bills into law – HB 890 by Rep. Harrison and HB 1346 by Rep. Dove – that will strengthen Louisiana’s seafood industry. HB 1346 is part of the Governor’s 2010 legislative package.

Governor Jindal said, “In light of the threat that the BP oil spill poses to our seafood industry, these acts will become even more important to bolster Louisiana’s seafood industry and help to uphold the high quality of our state’s seafood.”

Specifically, HB 1346 will allow use of up to 10 percent of the deposits made annually to the Artificial Reef Development Fund to assist shrimpers and shrimp processors in participating in a new certification program being developed by the Secretary of the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries. Artificial reefs are in and around where the shrimping industry operates and under this new law a portion of the funds associated with the Louisiana Artificial Reef Program will be allowed for use in supporting the Louisiana wild-caught shrimp industry.

HB 1346 compliments HB 890 by Rep. Joe Harrison, which authorizes the Secretary of the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries to develop certification standards for Louisiana wild fish and seafood, including wild-caught shrimp. HB 1346 directs approximately $800,000 per year toward the certification program.

For those choosing to participate in the program, the new law provides that all seafood products intended to be marketed as Louisiana Wild Seafood certified must meet all criteria and requirements as set out in the department’s rules and regulations. Any product sold or attempted to be sold under the backing of the program which does not meet the standards will be removed from the market and disposed. Finally, the new law also requires any fisherman or seafood dealer wishing to participate in the program to apply to the department for a participation permit. Such permit may be suspended or revoked by the department for violation of the provisions of the program.

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