Steve Bittenbender

Contributing Editor

Steve Bittenbender works as a freelance journalist based in Louisville, Kentucky. Besides working for SeafoodSource.com as a contributing editor, Steve also works as an editor for Government Security News and as the Kentucky correspondent for the Reuters News Service. He also works as a sports writer for The (Louisville) Courier-Journal and The Associated Press. He has received awards from the Kentucky Press Association and the Louisville Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists for his on-going and enterprise reporting work.

Published on
June 6, 2019

Two environmental groups filed a lawsuit against the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday, 6 June, claiming it used a “backdoor maneuver” to permit a new longline fishery off the California coast.

In a statement, the Center for Biological Diversity and Turtle Island Restoration Network said NOAA Fisheries did not comply with the Endangered Species Act when it approved the longline fishery last month. The fishery

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Published on
May 31, 2019

Alaska’s congressional delegation has reached out to the U.S. Trade Representative, asking the federal government to reconsider a tariff decision that the lawmakers say will produce unintended consequences for the fishing industry in their state.

While U.S. Representative Don Young and U.S. Senators Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan agree with the Trump administration’s objective in ending China’s unfair trade practices, they

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Published on
May 9, 2019

The Louisiana state House of Representatives unanimously passed a bill earlier this week that would require restaurants in the state that serve crawfish and shrimp to notify customers of the product’s country of origin.

After the 99-0 vote Wednesday, House Bill 335, sponsored by state Rep. Jerry Gisclair (D-Larose) now heads to the state Senate for its consideration. 

Shrimp and crawfish are two of Louisiana’s biggest seafood

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Published on
May 7, 2019

The administration of U.S. President Donald Trump on announced on Monday, 6 May, it will publish a ruling that paves the way for 30,000 foreign workers to receive H-2B visas through the end of the fiscal year. Now, they want Congress to take action to expand the program.

According to the Federal Register, the ruling – a joint document between the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Labor – will be published on

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Published on
May 7, 2019

U.S. Rep. Don Young (R-Alaska) filed legislation on Thursday 2 May that would ban U.S. officials from allowing the establishment of new commercial aquaculture operations in federal waters.

Young’s bill, the Keep Fin Fish Free Act, would keep both the Secretary of the Interior and the Commerce Secretary from permitting fish farms in the United States’ exclusive economic zone unless specifically authorized by Congress.

Young

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Published on
May 6, 2019

U.S. President Donald Trump on Sunday, 5 May, escalated the trade war between the United States and China when he announced his intention to raise a 10 percent tariff on USD 200 billion (EUR 178.6 billion) of goods to 25 percent on Friday 10 May.

That hike will affect numerous types of seafood products already under the 10 percent tariff. 

“The Tariffs paid to the USA have had little impact on product cost, mostly borne

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Published on
May 2, 2019

A group of 25 U.S. Senators signed a letter last week to the leaders of the Senate Appropriations Committee urging them to save a federal program they claim has helped the domestic seafood trade and coastal communities.

The letter comes about a month after the Trump Administration released its proposed budget for the 2020 fiscal year. In that spending plan, the administration called for the elimination of the National Sea Grant program from the

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Published on
April 23, 2019

The administration of U.S. President Donald Trump has decided against appealing a federal judge’s ruling that NOAA Fisheries illegally withdrew a proposal that would have placed hard caps on the bycatch of protected species caught in California’s swordfish drift gillnet fishery.

On Monday, 15 April, when its brief was due to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, the administration instead filed a notice to dismiss its appeal

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Published on
April 17, 2019

A panel of federal appellate judges has upheld a lower court’s decision that ruled on NOAA Fisheries’ method for assessing bycatch in New England fisheries.

The ruling, which was announced on Friday, 12 April, in the District of Columbia chambers of the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, allows NOAA Fisheries to use statistical sampling to determine the amount of bycatch. It stems from a 2011 court case where judges ruled the agency did

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Published on
April 9, 2019

The administration of U.S. President Donald Trump announced on Monday, 8 April, it will consider adding new tariffs on products from the European Union, and seafood imports are on the list for potential duties.

The action stems from a World Trade Organization ruling that stated E.U. illegally subsidized airplane-maker Airbus, creating an unfair trade advantage. As a result of that ruling, the U.S. is contemplating tariffs on USD 11 billion (EUR

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