Seafood Import Monitoring Program Facts and Reports
The Seafood Import Monitoring Program establishes permitting, data reporting, and recordkeeping requirements for importing into the United States thirteen fish and fish products identified as vulnerable to illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing and/or seafood fraud.
Illegal, unreported, and unregulated, or IUU, fishing and seafood fraud jeopardize the health of fish stocks, distort legal markets, negatively impact consumer confidence, and create unfair competition in global markets for seafood producers who comply with fishery regulations. NOAA is engaged in numerous efforts to engage internationally, enhance enforcement, strengthen partnerships, and establish seafood traceability. The Seafood Import Monitoring Program is a risk-based seafood traceability program. It requires the importer of record to provide and report key chain of custody data—from the point of harvest to the point of entry into U.S. commerce—for imported fish and fish products identified as particularly vulnerable to IUU fishing and/or seafood fraud. Thirteen species groups (which are comprised of more than 1,100 unique species) are included in SIMP.
Compliance for eleven of the species groups covered began on January 1, 2018. Shrimp and abalone compliance became effective on December 31, 2018. Species groups included are Abalone, Atlantic cod, Blue crab (Atlantic), Dolphinfish (Mahi Mahi), Grouper, King crab (red), Pacific cod, Red snapper, Sea cucumber, Sharks, Shrimp, Swordfish, and Tuna (Albacore, Bigeye, Skipjack, Yellowfin, Bluefin)
The data collected allows these priority species of seafood to be traced from the point of entry into U.S. commerce back to the point of harvest or production to verify whether it was lawfully harvested or produced. The collection of catch and landing documentation for these priority seafood species is accomplished through the International Trade Data System, the U.S. government’s single data portal for all import and export reporting. The Seafood Import Monitoring Program is not a labeling program, nor is it consumer-facing. In keeping with the Magnuson-Stevens Act authority and the strict information security of the International Trade Data System, the information collected under this program is confidential.
Harvesting or Producing Entity
- Name and flag state of harvesting vessel(s)
- Evidence of authorization to fish, farm, or both (permit, farm registration, or license number)
- Unique vessel identifier, when available
- Name(s) of farm or aquaculture facility
- Type(s) of fishing gear used
Note: The fishing area and type of fishing gear should be specified per the reporting convention and codes used by the competent authority exercising jurisdiction over the wild capture operation. If no such reporting requirements exist, the Food and Agriculture Organization fishing area and gear codes should be used.
Fishing: What, When, and Where
- Species of fish—Aquatic Sciences Fishery Information System (ASFIS) three-alpha code
- Landing or offloading date(s)
- Point(s) of first landing
- Product form(s) at time of landing or offloading—including quantity and weight of product
- Area(s) of wild-capture or aquaculture harvest (farm address)
- Name of entity(ies) to which the fish was landed or delivered
Note: In cases where entries and products comprise more than one harvest event, each event that is relevant to a shipment must be reported but the importer does not need to link each event to a particular fish or portion of the shipment.
Importer of Record
- Name, affiliation, and contact information
- NOAA Fisheries-issued international fisheries trade permit number
- Information on any transshipment of product, such as declarations by harvesting or carrier vessels, and bills of lading
- Records on processing, re-processing, and commingling of product
Note: The importer of record is responsible for keeping records regarding the chain of custody detailed above.
- SIMP Report to Congress on Efforts to Prevent Import of Seafood Harvested by IUU Fishing and Seafood Fraud, (pdf)
- Report on the Implementation of the U.S. Seafood Import Monitoring Program (pdf), May 2021. It captures program data and efforts for the first two years of the program’s operation (2019 and 2020).
- Report to Congress on Metrics for Evaluating the Seafood Import Monitoring Program (pdf), April 2021. Provides Congress with the metrics that are planned for use in evaluating the effectiveness of SIMP.