Marine Fisheries Economics

Since 1990, Dr. Benedict C. Posadas has consistently developed and maintained the Mississippi State University (MSU), Coastal Research and Extension Center’s (CREC) extension and research (R&E) program in economics with an emphasis on the following major areas.

The choice of the R&E focus areas was motivated by the information needs of the coastal communities and residents, marine, horticultural and coastal-related industries, business establishments and organizations, and state and federal regulatory agencies. The specific mandates of the state and federal funding initiatives dictated some of the directions of R&E programming efforts.

The CREC’s horticulture and marine resource economics (HMRE) extension and research programs during the past one and one-half decades were made possible by additional extramural funding from state and federal funding agencies totaling more than five million dollars. Several requests of regional, national and international agencies and media organizations to participate in committees, workshops, conferences, collaborative efforts, and press releases demonstrate the extent of the usefulness and recognition of the HMRE programs conducted by Dr. Posadas.


Economic Impacts of Harmful Coastal Events – 2011-2021:

More than 13 years ago, Hurricane Katrina devastated the coastal areas in the Northern Gulf of Mexico in August 2005. The closures of significant portions of Gulf waters to commercial and recreational fishing due to the Deepwater Horizon (DWH) oil spill in April 2010 altered the production, recreation, and consumption decisions of households and businesses in affected communities. Mississippi was in the process of restoring the public oyster reefs after H. Katrina and the DWH oil spill when the Bonnet Carre Spillway (BCS) opening in 2011 resulted to massive oyster mortalities in the shellfish growing waters. These mortalities halted the recovery process of the oyster fishery to its baseline levels in 2002-2004. The prolonged exposure to freshwater which caused massive mortalities of the oyster populations required restoration projects to enable the fishery to recover to its baseline status.

Long-term data were compiled by Dr. Posadas to develop economic recovery models (ERM) for oyster harvesting. The ERM explains the individual and joint effects of the recent natural and technological disasters, output and input markets, environmental conditions, and regulatory and mana management strategies on the levels of commercial oyster harvests and dockside values. An initial version of the ERM model was provided to the MS Department of Marine Resources to support a federal fisheries disaster declaration in 2011. The state of MS received almost $11 million federal disaster assistance for the recovery of its oyster and crab fisheries.

The disaster economics publications and presentation of Dr. Posadas are listed in and


Economic Impacts of Marine Debris – 2018-2021:  

This analysis is conducted in collaboration with an MSU coastal ecology specialist (Dr. Eric Sparks), an NOAA marine debris program coordinator (Caitlin Wessel), Mississippi Coalition for Vietnamese-American Fisher Folks & Families (MCVAFF), Mississippi Commercial Fisheries United (MCFU), and Mississippi commercial shrimpers. This analysis is part of a three-year project funded by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Gulf of Mexico Program, Engaging the fishing community to remove marine debris and quantify impacts. Dr. Posadas devotes 8.33 percent (3.33 hr/wk on Wednesdays) of this time to perform the tasks outlined in the project proposal starting on July 1, 2018.

The reduction of marine debris in the commercial fishery will enhance economic opportunities in coastal fishing counties. Commercial fishing generated total economic impacts amounting to $107 million and created almost 2,000 jobs in Mississippi. The overall goal of this economic analysis is to assess the economic impacts of marine debris on commercial fishing. Specifically, it aims to achieve the following objectives. First, construct technical characteristics of marine debris caught by commercial fishing vessels/boats. Second, compile damages to commercial fishing vessels/boats and gear, and costs of removal and disposal of marine debris. Third, compile lost fishing time, reduction in catches, or foregone sales associated with marine debris. Finally, estimate economic impacts on commercial fishing associated with marine debris.

The fisheries economics publications and presentation of Dr. Posadas are listed in and


Economic Impacts of the Mississippi Seafood Industry – 1990-2021:

With funding and information need by the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources since 1990, Dr. Posadas provided an estimate of the annual economic contribution of the state seafood industry by major species: shrimp, oyster, crabs, and fish. Mississippi marine regulatory agencies needed updated estimates of the economic contributions of the seafood industry to effectively manage state marine resources.

This need became very urgent after the massive damage from the natural and technological disasters that hit the seafood industry. State regulatory agencies expressed a more vital need for additional information on the economic contributions of the seafood industry by sector and species landed, processed, distributed, and consumed in Mississippi. At a recent Producer Advisory Council Meeting, the American Shrimp Processors Association requested updated estimates for the seafood industry by species. 

The fisheries economics publications and presentation of Dr. Posadas are listed in and