Massachusetts Grown...and Fresher!
COMMONWEALTH QUALITY SECTORS
Harvest & Gear Requirements
Harvest regulations promote a healthy, sustainable supply of lobsters by protecting immature and oversized lobsters as well as egg-bearing females. The Massachusetts lobster industry maintains strict size requirements, and lobsters that are either too small or too big must be returned to the ocean. Likewise, egg-bearing female lobsters and those capable of bearing eggs must be released.
Lobstermen must equip traps with escape vents to allow sub-legal-sized lobsters to escape, and they must attach biodegradable materials so that marine life may escape in the event a trap is lost. By observing these and other related provisions, Massachusetts lobstermen help maintain a breeding population and therefore encourage a sustainable supply for the future.
What’s more, our lobstermen are the first in the country to be 100% compliant with whale-safe gear regulations. Because our coastal waters represent an important feeding habitat for protected and endangered whales, Massachusetts lobstermen are required to use 600-pound break-away buoy links and sinking ground lines to ensure the safety of these mammals.
Protecting wildlife and our natural resources – all the more reason to choose Commonwealth Quality lobsters and support our local lobstermen!
Massachusetts Lobster Fishing Best Management Practices (BMPs)
Commonwealth Quality participants not only adhere to strict regulations enforced by federal, state and local government, they also employ best management practices (BMPs) developed specifically for the program by the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries (DMF) and the Massachusetts Lobstermen’s Association.
Lobster BMPs are designed to promote food safety as well as protect the environment and wildlife, all while ensuring the consumer receives the highest-quality product possible.