Certifier : 
MRAG Americas, Inc.
Certified status : 
Certified
Certified since : 
03 Jun 2014
Certificate expires : 
01 Dec 2024

Overview

Fisheries are composed of one or more parts, each of which is entitled to receive an MSC certificate. These parts or “units” are defined by their target stock(s), fishing gear type(s) and if relevant vessel type(s), and the fishing fleets or groups of vessels.

When the term “Unit of Certification” is used for fishing units that are in assessment, it refers to the “Unit of Assessment” or “Unit of potential certification”. Expand a status below to view the parts that form this fishery. To check the detailed scope, download the latest certificate or open the Assessments page to get the latest report. Find out more by visiting our page on Fisheries

Units of Certification & Certificate Information

  • Certified
    MSC UoC Number Species Gear Type Ocean Area Certificate Code
    UoC-0537 Arrow-tooth flounder (Atheresthes stomias) Trawls - Bottom trawls - otter trawls 67 (Pacific, Northeast), 77 (Pacific, Eastern Central) MSC-F-31152 (MRAG-F-0073)
    UoC-1792 Bocaccio rockfish (Sebastes paucispinis) Trawls - Otter trawls 67 (Pacific, Northeast), 77 (Pacific, Eastern Central) MSC-F-31152 (MRAG-F-0073)
    UoC-1791 Canary rockfish (Sebastes pinniger) Trawls - Otter trawls 67 (Pacific, Northeast), 77 (Pacific, Eastern Central) MSC-F-31152 (MRAG-F-0073)
    UoC-0543 Chilipepper rockfish (Sebastes goodei) Trawls - Bottom trawls - otter trawls 67 (Pacific, Northeast), 77 (Pacific, Eastern Central) MSC-F-31152 (MRAG-F-0073)
    UoC-1793 Darkblotched rockfish (Sebastes crameri) Trawls - Otter trawls 67 (Pacific, Northeast), 77 (Pacific, Eastern Central) MSC-F-31152 (MRAG-F-0073)
    UoC-0533 Dover sole (Microstomus pacificus) Trawls - Bottom trawls - otter trawls 67 (Pacific, Northeast), 77 (Pacific, Eastern Central) MSC-F-31152 (MRAG-F-0073)
    UoC-0535 English sole (Pleuronectes vetulus) Trawls - Bottom trawls - otter trawls 67 (Pacific, Northeast), 77 (Pacific, Eastern Central) MSC-F-31152 (MRAG-F-0073)
    UoC-1096 Lingcod (Ophiodon elongatus) Trawls - Otter trawls 67 (Pacific, Northeast), 77 (Pacific, Eastern Central) MSC-F-31152 (MRAG-F-0073)
    UoC-1095 Lingcod (Ophiodon elongatus) Trawls - Otter trawls 67 (Pacific, Northeast), 77 (Pacific, Eastern Central) MSC-F-31152 (MRAG-F-0073)
    UoC-0547 Longnose skate (Raja rhina) Trawls - Bottom trawls - otter trawls 67 (Pacific, Northeast), 77 (Pacific, Eastern Central) MSC-F-31152 (MRAG-F-0073)
    UoC-0549 Longspine thornyhead (Sebastolobus altivelis) Trawls - Otter trawls 67 (Pacific, Northeast), 77 (Pacific, Eastern Central) MSC-F-31152 (MRAG-F-0073)
    UoC-1794 Pacific ocean perch (Sebastes alutus) Trawls - Otter trawls 67 (Pacific, Northeast), 77 (Pacific, Eastern Central) MSC-F-31152 (MRAG-F-0073)
    UoC-0536 Petrale sole (Eopsetta jordani) Trawls - Bottom trawls - otter trawls 67 (Pacific, Northeast), 77 (Pacific, Eastern Central) MSC-F-31152 (MRAG-F-0073)
    UoC-0545 Sablefish (Anoplopoma fimbria) Trawls - Bottom trawls - otter trawls 67 (Pacific, Northeast), 77 (Pacific, Eastern Central) MSC-F-31152 (MRAG-F-0073)
    UoC-0548 Shortspine thornyhead (Sebastolobus alascanus) Trawls - Bottom trawls - otter trawls 67 (Pacific, Northeast), 77 (Pacific, Eastern Central) MSC-F-31152 (MRAG-F-0073)
    UoC-0544 Splitnose rockfish (Sebastes diploproa) Trawls - Bottom trawls - otter trawls 67 (Pacific, Northeast), 77 (Pacific, Eastern Central) MSC-F-31152 (MRAG-F-0073)
    UoC-0542 Widow rockfish (Sebastes entomelas) Trawls - Bottom trawls - otter trawls 67 (Pacific, Northeast), 77 (Pacific, Eastern Central) MSC-F-31152 (MRAG-F-0073)
    UoC-1092 Yellowtail rockfish (Sebastes flavidus) Trawls - Otter trawls 67 (Pacific, Northeast), 77 (Pacific, Eastern Central) MSC-F-31152 (MRAG-F-0073)
  • Suspended
    MSC UoC Number Species Gear Type Ocean Area Certificate Code
    UoC-1795 Pacific cod (Gadus macrocephalus) Trawls - Otter trawls 67 (Pacific, Northeast), 77 (Pacific, Eastern Central) MSC-F-31152 (MRAG-F-0073)

View glossary of terms

Catch by Species

Species Reported Catch Year Metric Tonnes
Pacific cod (Gadus macrocephalus) 2020 26.4
Dover sole (Microstomus pacificus) 2020 4,688.5
English sole (Pleuronectes vetulus) 2020 83.2
Shortspine thornyhead (Sebastolobus alascanus) 2020 336.5
Longspine thornyhead (Sebastolobus altivelis) 2020 113.7
Chilipepper rockfish (Sebastes goodei) 2020 677.3
Splitnose rockfish (Sebastes diploproa) 2020 61.3
Bocaccio rockfish (Sebastes paucispinis) 2020 386.7
Pacific ocean perch (Sebastes alutus) 2020 511.5
Longnose skate (Raja rhina) 2020 442.2
Darkblotched rockfish (Sebastes crameri) 2020 263.8
Widow rockfish (Sebastes entomelas) 2020 8,273.2
Petrale sole (Eopsetta jordani) 2020 2,087.0
Lingcod (Ophiodon elongatus) 2020 375.4
Canary rockfish (Sebastes pinniger) 2020 338.8
Sablefish (Anoplopoma fimbria) 2020 1,086.8
Yellowtail rockfish (Sebastes flavidus) 2020 3,406.3
Arrow-tooth flounder (Atheresthes stomias) 2020 259.4

Information is provided by an independent Conformity Assessment Body as live weight (the weight of species at the time of catch, before processing) and where a fishing season covers multiple years, the end year is given as the reported catch year. Additional information is available in the latest report, see the assessments page.

About this Fishery

This fishery was certified as sustainable in 2014. It is located in US West Coast Pacific waters, from the southern Canadian border to the northern Mexican border. It comprises 17 different fisheries, using a variety of otter trawl configurations depending on the species targeted. 

The fishery is limited entry, meaning only a limited number of vessels are allowed to participate. They pursue the following species:

• Arrowtooth flounder (Atheresthes stomias)

• Chilipepper rockfish (Sebastes goodei)

• Dover sole (Microstomus pacificus)

• English sole (Parophrys vetulus)

• Ling cod (Ophiodon elongatus)

• Longnose skate (Raja rhina)

• Longspine thornyhead (Sebastolobus altivelis)

• Petrale sole (Eopsetta jordani)

• Sablefish (Anoplopoma fimbria)

• Shortspine thornyhead (Sebastolobus alascanus)

• Splitnose rockfish (Sebastes diploproa)

• Widow rockfish (Sebastes entomelas)

• Yellowtail rockfish (Sebastes flavidus)

US West Coast groundfish trawl vessel image © Susan Chambers

Market Information

West Coast groundfish compete in both the fresh and frozen fish product markets, on a global scale not only with similar species produced in other regions of the world but with other fish species such as salmon and tuna. In 2006, Japan was the largest destination for exported fish products, with 19 per cent of exports going to Japan. Close behind Japan, China and Canada were the largest export destination at 15 per cent and 10 per cent respectively.