Michigan commercial fish harvest value declines in 2015

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LANSING, Mich. (AP) – State officials say a decline in the wholesale price of lake whitefish was largely responsible for a drop-off in the value of Michigan’s commercial fish harvest in 2015.

The Department of Natural Resources says state-licensed commercial operators caught about 3.4 million pounds of fish last year. The wholesale dockside value of the catch exceeded $5.4 million before processing, marketing and retail sales.

The volume of the harvest in pounds was about the same as during 2014. But the gross dockside value fell nearly 7 percent. The DNR attributes the drop almost entirely to a 12.5 percent decline in the wholesale price of lake whitefish.

Lake whitefish accounted for more than 66 percent of the state-licensed harvest by pounds and 88 percent of the gross value in 2015.

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