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North Atlantic Haddock

North Atlantic Haddock, (Melanogrammus aeglefinus) is a member of the cod family distinguishable by a dark stripe and a black spot found on either side of their body.

Haddock are demersal, which means they live near the bottom of the ocean, frequently recorded at depths of 260 to 660 feet.  Haddock can live up to 20 years and can reach up to 3 feet. Younger haddock in the Barents Sea are relatively stationary however adults will migrate longer distances.  Haddock survive on sea urchin, worms, mollusks, American eel, sea cucumbers and other small fish and cephalopods.

Haddock is harvested using bottom trawls and longline. Trawlers head, gut and freeze the fish immediately after harvest.  This preserves freshness, flavor and the overall quality of the fish.  Fillets typically range from 6 to 12 ounces, and are white with a firm texture.  Although available year round, peak season for the fishery is late summer to winter.

A very popular fish known for its mild sweet flavor and lean, flaky texture, haddock is sold fresh, frozen and smoked.


The North Atlantic Barents Sea Haddock fishery is managed by the Joint Norwegian-Russian Fishery Commission.  The Commission was established in 1976 and provides efficient joint management of Barents Sea fishing.  Scientific recommendations are provided to the Commission by the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES).

The North Atlantic Barents Sea Haddock fishery was certified as sustainable by the Marine Stewardship Council in 2010.

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