Last Update: April 2018

The Americas Snapper and Grouper Supply Chain Roundtable operated from 2014­–2018 and focused on monitoring sustainability status and issues of snapper and grouper stocks in North, Central, and South America and pushing for improvements where they are needed. In April 2018, the SR was merged with the Mexican Seafood SR, because of the participants' primary interest in Mexican snapper and grouper fisheries. This SR may eventually be reactivated to address other important Latin American snapper and grouper fisheries. 

Snapper and grouper are important fisheries resources with great commercial value, not only for export to major international markets but also for the livelihoods and food security of many local, small-scale communities worldwide. The life history characteristics of these species (e.g., slow-growing, late-maturing, seasonal-spawning aggregations) make them particularly susceptible to overexploitation. However, the status of many snapper and grouper stocks is unknown, particularly in the multispecies, small-scale fisheries in developing countries where the reporting system is absent or insufficient. The main risk to the snapper and grouper seafood sector is from overexploitation and lack of effective management. 

Snapper and grouper species are targeted by commercial, recreational, and artisanal (subsistence/traditional) fisheries, using a wide variety of gears. In most cases, they are targeted in multispecies fisheries. Many countries in North, Central, and South America operate sizable snapper and grouper fisheries, and the United States is the main export market for the majority of these products. 

The Americas Snapper and Grouper Supply Chain Roundtable focuses on monitoring sustainability status and issues of snapper and grouper stocks in North, Central, and South America and pushing for improvements where they are needed. SFP’s approach with this project is to convene suppliers and buyers to help them identify synergies among companies and find common ground where they can work together to catalyze, monitor, and advance snapper and grouper improvement efforts. 

2018 Participants:


Alfa Gamma Group
Beacon Fisheries
Beaver Street Fisheries
Chefs Trading
The Fishin' Co.
Incredible Fish
NETUNO USA
New England Marine Atlanta
Quirch Foods Co.
Sea Delight
Seafarers, Inc.

Fisheries and/or FIPs Covered:

This roundtable focused on snapper and grouper fisheries in North, Central, and South America, as well as the associated non-snapper and non-grouper species harvested in those fisheries. The following FIPs were supported and monitored:

Mexico Grouper FIP

North Brazilian Caribbean Red Snapper FIP

2017 Improvement Needs and Recommendations: 

1.  The Mexican grouper fishery management plan has not been fully implemented, enforcement of current grouper regulations in Mexico is inadequate, and substantial harvest of undersized and immature grouper continues to occur. Enforcement of the current minimum legal size would be extremely detrimental to the artisanal fishery, thus alternative management systems may need to be considered.

2.  The Brazilian red snapper fishery is overexploited, lacking in some basic fishery data, and in need of essential management measures.

3.  The snapper fishery in Mexico is virtually unmanaged, and the main target species are unassessed. Because a large proportion of snapper production is exported to the US, there should be adequate leverage to initiate a FIP in this fishery.

4.  The Nicaragua snapper fishery has substantial sustainability issues, such as overexploitation and bomb fishing. Because a large proportion of snapper production is exported to the US, there should be adequate leverage to initiate a FIP in this fishery.

5.  The Panama snapper and grouper fishery is virtually unmanaged. Because the large proportion of snapper and grouper production is exported to the US, there should be adequate leverage to initiate a FIP in this fishery.

2017 Action Recommendations for SR Participants:

1. Support the ongoing Mexican grouper and North Brazilian Caribbean red snapper FIPs. Both FIPs have well-designed workplans but are in need of additional support to fully implement the workplans.

2. Support the creation of a bioeconomic model for the Mexican grouper fishery to explore alternate management scenarios.

3. Ensure only legally harvested fish are entering your supply chain.

4. Launch FIPs for Mexican snapper, Nicaraguan snapper, and Panamanian snapper and grouper.

Follow this link to learn more about the activities and progress of this SR.

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