U.S. wild-caught Pacific cod is a smart seafood choice because it is sustainably managed and responsibly harvested under U.S. regulations.
There are four stocks of Pacific cod: Bering Sea, Gulf of Alaska, Aleutian Islands, and West Coast:
2018 stock assessments in the Bering Sea and Gulf of Alaska indicate that Pacific cod are not overfished and not subject to overfishing.
Although there was a 2018 stock assessment for the Aleutian Islands stock, data are insufficient to determine the population status at this time.
The West Coast population of Pacific cod has never been formally assessed, but is not subject to overfishing based on 2016 catch data.
In Alaska, scientists and managers determine the population status of Pacific cod based on estimates of spawning biomass—a measure of the number of females in the population that are able to reproduce.
Estimated biomass has fluctuated over the past few decades; the stock increased rapidly, peaked in the 1980s, then declined slightly and stabilized.
Where They Live
Pacific cod are found in the coastal North Pacific Ocean, from the Bering Sea to Southern California in the east and to the Sea of Japan in the west.
They are less common in Central California and are rare in Southern California.(Source: NOAA)