R-12-05 The Seafood Links Project: Promoting sustainable seafood in Maine’s inland areas

Caroline Noblet
School of Economics

Teresa Johnson
School of Marine Sciences

Brianne Suldovsky
Department of Communication & Journalism

Laura A. Lindenfeld
(former) Associate Professor of Communication

Despite seafood’s importance to the state’s economy, health, and heritage, fish and shellfish products are not always available and accessible in non-coastal communities. Increasing consumption of seafood throughout all of Maine, by raising awareness and increasing supply, will benefit the health of individual Mainers, sustain the coastal communities and working waterfronts that benefit the entire state, and strengthen our resilience in the face of socioeconomic change.

Using a mixed-methods social science approach, the researchers explored how consumers in Maine conceptualize seafood and its connections to “local” and “sustainable” food, and how this information can support new and expanded markets in inland areas. Using Portland, Lewiston, and Bangor as sample communities, they assessed communication and collaboration infrastructure and networks that exist to help increase interest in Maine seafood. Through local partnerships with restaurants, culinary institutes, and other stakeholders, the Seafood Links Project hopes to support Maine seafood and encourage seasonal, local, healthy eating.

Read the UMaine News story from June 2016.

One-year project; total Sea Grant funds $46,298