A portion of the sale proceeds will go toward the North Carolina Fisheries Association.
Jason Davis, founder of Loggerhead Printing located in Sneads Ferry, is making waves with his new T-shirt that reads, Protect The Fisherman. Protect An Endangered Species.
It’s his creative response to the new proposed regulations passed down by the N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission, which has the potential to limit when and where fisherman can collect their daily bread.
Though these regulations are not formally enforced yet, their potential impact has many commercial fishermen and the fish markets that rely on them fearful. Across the board, popular fish markets from Sneads Ferry to Jacksonville and even Emerald Isle refuse to comment on this touchy subject. It’s an issue that could impact the way they and their families in our coastal community live their life.
“Well, nobody will make a comment about something like that, because it may affect the business even more, ya know what I’m saying?” explained Neil, from Capn’ Willis Seafood Market on Emerald Isle.
The controversy regarding the new potential regulations revolves around quota.
While the NC Wildlife Federation, which submitted the petition, has mentioned publicly to the media that their proposed regulations were not a ban meant to completely prevent local fisherman from collecting local shrimp and other fish, it is a way to protect particular species of fish from being overfished and to protect vital nursery areas around North Carolina.
But, locals like Davis, argue the regulations would have more of an impact than realized.
“The biggest issue is this regulation will affect not just the fishermen themselves, but their families. They won’t be able to make a living here. Your tourism, restaurant and everything will be affected. They are selling local shrimp and seafood here — all that will stop. I think it’s going to end traditions that have been in this community for a hundred years,” Davis said.
As Davis explained, part of the regulations set to become formalized will dictate where they can fish, the number of days they can fish and the times they can set out during the day. There are many, many other variables in the equation that supersede just protecting the fish.
“It’s masked in devastating our eco system when really that isn’t the case,” said David Busch, the North Carolina’s Fisheries Association’s biologist and science advisor to the board. The North Carolina Fisheries Association is an organization founded in 1952 with the purpose to serve fishing families by protecting their heritage and promoting their livelihood-seafood. “And the process to make these regulations official has begun.”
Still, he says, there is a bit of hope.
“There will be opportunities later on to stop these rules, but the concern for everybody is it never should have gotten this far. The biggest fear, though, is there’s not enough public attention going on for this issue. And education to the consumer, the largest stake holder here in North Carolina, is key. If we don’t learn about it, pay attention to what’s going on, then these regulation will get passed,” Busch said.
The NC Wildlife Federation was unavailable for further comment or questions.
So, as a way to help out who he says is the underdog, Davis has created the T-shirts. He’s been a lifelong resident, started his business six years ago, and loves his community. Those looking to help bring awareness can purchase a T-shirt in either green or white with the logo Protect The Fisherman. Protect An Endangered Species. A portion of the proceeds will go towards the North Carolina Fisheries Association. Why donate to this particular organization? Simply put, because like Davis, the North Carolina Fisheries Association believes commercial fishing begins and ends with family.
A portion of the proceeds will go toward the North Carolina Fisheries Association. Why donate to this particular organization? Simply put, Davis says, the North Carolina Fisheries Association — like he does — believes commercial fishing begins and ends with family.
To purchase a shirt, visit https://squareup.com/store/loggerhead-printing-and-embroidery/item/save-the-fishermen. Prices range from $15 to $17.