Congress members asking for more relief for seafood industry and shellfish producers during COVID-19
DELMARVA- Some members of congress, including Congressman Andy Harris, are pushing to get relief funding for watermen impacted by the pandemic.
The group of lawmakers have signed a letter to the USDA highlighting the impacts COVID-19 has had on the seafood industry, especially when it comes to shellfish producers.
Congressman Harris said this industry is not making as much financially, as they did pre-COVID.
Members of Congress are requesting that the USDA establish a short term purchasing program for shellfish products to give them financial relief.
“Since a lot of restaurants closed, a lot of restaurants used the products of our seafood industry that are not being used right now, so we’re just asking the US Department of Agriculture to buy up those products, put them in storage, and use them in the future,” Congressman Andy Harris, (R) MD 1st District, said.
In the letter, it also said that the CARES ACT provided money to the USDA to assist families and farmers in need through nutrition programs, but we are told, to date, none of this funding has been used to assist clam or oyster producers.