The following notice was posted and sent out to commercial fishermen and marinas regarding the harvesting of mullet roe.
During the 2011–2012 mullet run the FWC received numerous complaints regarding large amounts of roe mullet being discarded into the water dead and violations involving the improper storage, cooling and transportation of fish by harvesters.
It is requested that you post this informational notice for commercial fishermen at your business location. FWC Officers will be conducting proactive random quality control inspections throughout the mullet run season to ensure compliance with fisheries regulations and seafood quality control.
The FWC has compiled the following excerpts of Florida Statute and Administrative Rule as a reminder for commercial fishermen but it is not a complete list of regulations. Commercial fishermen are responsible for informing themselves of the regulations relevant to their activities.
Mullet is a food fish and the take of mullet and its roe is regulated by Florida statute and rules. The take of mullet, and other food fish, from the waters of this state, that is not being used, requires the immediate release and return of such fish ALIVE to the water and none of those fish may be placed or deposited any place out of the water.
Additionally all striped and silver mullet harvested for commercial purposes within or without the waters of the state shall be landed in a whole condition. The possession, while in or on state waters, of a mullet harvested for commercial purposes that has been beheaded, sliced, divided, filleted, ground, skinned, scaled, or deboned is prohibited.
Boats harvesting or transporting fresh seafood shall preserve the quality of the seafood with finely divided ice or adequate refrigeration and shall be protected from the sun and weather and contamination.
Seafood while in transit shall be either in an enclosed conveyance with secure doors, in covered containers, or otherwise wrapped or packaged to ensure protection from contamination.
Seafood being transported by primary or secondary producers shall be kept at safe temperatures (below 41 degrees Fahrenheit) during all periods of transportation and delivery.
See Florida Statues Chapter 379 and Florida Administrative Code Chapters 68B for Marine Resources and 68E-27 for Seafood Quality Control. Florida Statutes can be reviewed online at: www.leg.state.fl.us/ and the Florida Administrative Code can be reviewed online at: www.flrules.org/.
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