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
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

Read More
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

Read More
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

Read More
Published on
April 9, 2019

The U.S. seafood industry and others that rely on temporary labor received good news at the end of last month when President Donald Trump's administration announced it would allocate an extra 30,000 visas under the H-2B worker program.

It’s a marked change from the last couple years, when the administration released only 15,000 visas, which companies can use to hire foreign workers for non-agricultural jobs. This year’s announcement

Read More
Published on
April 5, 2019

The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council announced on Thursday, 4 April, it approved plans for states to manage the red snapper recreational fishery for the upcoming season.

Pending the approval of U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, which is likely since he’s praised the ongoing pilot project, the five states will get the quota share they originally requested in their applications. 

Florida holds the largest share with 44.8

Read More
Published on
April 3, 2019

A draft assessment on Pacific sardine by NOAA Fisheries shows the stock remains overfished, which could lead to it remaining closed for commercial fishermen.

Officials estimate the sardine biomass will be 27,547 metric tons by this July, well below the 150,000 metric ton biomass necessary to reopen the stock for fishing. Anything less than 50,000 metric tons is considered overfished.

Sardines, a forage fish that serves as prey to a multitude of

Read More
Published on
March 27, 2019

A U.S. organization representing the seafood industry announced on Tuesday, 26 March, that it reached a 10-year agreement with two key federal agencies regarding the development process for offshore wind energy projects in the Atlantic Ocean.

Under the terms of the memorandum of understanding signed by NOAA Fisheries, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, and the Responsible Offshore Development Alliance, they will seek to engage local and

Read More
Published on
March 21, 2019

U.S. President Donald Trump announced on Wednesday, 20 March that U.S. tariffs on imported products from China would continue, even as the two countries make strides toward resolving their trade issues.

Earlier this month, media reports indicated Chinese and American officials were close to a deal that would repeal the levies in exchange for China agreeing to purchase additional products. However, Trump’s comments to reporters outside the

Read More
Published on
March 18, 2019

A bipartisan group of congressmen has unveiled a bill that seeks to save the critically North Atlantic right whale.

H.R. 1568, or the Scientific Assistance for Very Endangered (SAVE) Right Whales Act, introduced by U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton earlier this month, would provide up to USD 5 million (EUR 4.4 million) in grants annually for the next 10 years to develop technology that would reduce the mortality rates for the species.

Some of the grant

Read More
Published on
March 8, 2019

Minnesota-based trū Shrimp has announced a partnership with a Minneapolis public relations and communications firm to help it develop a brand strategy for the aquaculture-based shrimp products it plans to take to consumers.

Jamie Brink-Thordson, trū’s sales and marketing director, told SeafoodSource that Padilla was one of four finalists for the contract. The process, which also included fielding pitches from firms outside of Minnesota,

Read More