Eat Gulf Seafood


Gulf Seafood Marketing Coalition Releases Findings from its Second Gulf Seafood Consumer and Industry Perception Study

Nov 5, 2014

TAMPA, FLORIDA – November 5, 2014 – The Gulf Seafood Marketing Coalition (Coalition) partnered with Big Communications and New South Research to measure consumer and industry perception of Gulf Seafood four years post- oil spill. The survey measured its effectiveness of messaging, impact of the Gulf oil spill, key drivers for consumption, most proficient demographics, and what still needs to be done or improved since the initial survey in 2011. Five insights that the 2014 survey revealed:

  • Preparing and eating seafood at home is an important aspect for the majority of seafood eaters.
  • Fine dining of seafood saw a sharp uptick. It reinforces that people still view seafood as an occasion-based staple. And because the increase was dramatic and nicely spread across frequency, it is not simply the upper incomes that are venturing back to enjoy it more often.
  • Seafood choices are driven by three primary factors: Freshness/Quality, Healthy, and Cost. Cost is still the biggest barrier to consuming it more often. However, woven throughout the rest of the research, taste, flavor (tenderness and texture), and especially variety continually showed up as important to decision making.
  • Sustainability, place of origin, and localness are all important to the consumer.
  • The lingering effects of the oil spill seemed to have diminished over time. Only five percent of the total sample would not recommend Gulf Seafood because of the oil spill.

The survey also found those likely to recommend Gulf seafood increased by four percent from 2011.

“The consumers who eat the most seafood account for 19% of the sample and eat over 50% of seafood consumed,” said Chris Nelson, Chairman, Gulf Seafood Marketing Coalition. “We will continue to target these “seafoodies” with our marketing messages and help them find Gulf seafood through our ‘find it’ apps and website”

The survey was conducted from July 1, 2014 to August 31, 2014; 1,802 online and telephone survey over a six geographic region with a blend of ages, incomes and genders. Interview candidates were required to have eaten seafood at least twice in the past 90 days and demographics and geographic participation were carefully controlled to mirror 2011 sample.

For more information about the Gulf Seafood Marketing Coalition or the survey, please contact Joanne McNeely Zaritsky at, 850-224-1129.

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About Gulf Seafood Marketing Coalition
The Coalition provides a framework for the seafood community to coordinate marketing efforts among the Gulf States with emphasis on working with tourism boards, restaurants, retailers and chefs.  The Gulf & South Atlantic Fisheries Foundation, Inc. is coordinating the Gulf Seafood Marketing Coalition through funding provided by the Gulf States Marine Fisheries Commission’s (NOAA Award #NA10NMF4770481).  For more information, please visit and follow the Coalition on Facebook at Gulf Coast Seafood and Twitter at @eatgulfseafood.

About Gulf & South Atlantic Fisheries Foundation, Inc.
The Foundation is a private, regional nonprofit research organization with a general membership and Board of Trustees representing a wide spectrum of the commercial fishing industry throughout the southeast U.S.   Through the Foundation, the commercial seafood and fishing industry can collectively identify industry needs, and address those needs through appropriate research and other activities.  Representing the nine-state region from Virginia to Texas, the Foundation has sponsored more than 600 fisheries related research projects.

For more information, please visit

About Big Communications
Big is a Birmingham-based creative communications company specializing in digital, branding, content marketing, public relations, media, and video. For more information about Big, visit

About New South Research
New South Research specializes in various types of qualitative and quantitative research methodologies such as focus groups, telephone and online surveys, legal research, and taste tests. For more information, visit