PORTLAND, Maine — Maine’s cod fishery, once one of the most lucrative in the Northeast, has declined to the point that it had its least valuable year in more than a half-century in 2018.
The state’s industry harvesting the fish-and-chips staple goes back centuries, and it once brought millions of pounds of the fish to land year after year. But data from the state Department of Marine Resources indicate the state’s cod were worth just over $200,000 at the docks last year — less than the median price of a single-family home in Maine.
That’s the lowest number since 1967, and a fraction of the $2 million to $16 million worth of cod fishermen routinely brought to land in Maine in the 1980s and ’90s. The volume of last year’s catch was also the second-lowest in recorded history, barely edging out last year at about 89,000 pounds.
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