AFA Pollock Cooperatives
The American Fisheries Act (AFA) was signed into law in October 1998. The purpose of the AFA was to tighten U.S. ownership standards for U.S. fishing vessels under the Anti-reflagging Act, and to provide the BSAI pollock fleet the opportunity to conduct their fishery in a more rational manner while protecting non-AFA participants in the other fisheries.
The AFA eliminated the race for pollock through the establishment of cooperatives with specific provisions for their allocations, structure, and participation by catcher vessels and processing plants, as well as annual reporting requirements and excessive share limits. In response to a directive in the AFA, the Council added measures to protect other fisheries from adverse effects arising from the exclusive pollock allocation. Cooperative fishing began under the AFA program in 1999.
The effects of AFA on the pollock industry were tremendous. Capacity was reduced, efficiency was increased, regulatory bycatch was reduced, a higher portion of the fish was utilized, and higher valued products were produced.
More information at NMFS's site: http://www.fakr.noaa.gov/sustainablefisheries/afa/afa_sf.htm