Getting Started

There are multiple state and federal agencies involved in the commercial fishing licensing and permitting process. Please see the list below to assist you in assuring that all licensing requirements have been fulfilled.

State Agencies

Be sure to contact the nearest local area office for details pertaining to the fishery you wish to participate in: contact your local area office.

Federal Agencies

National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) oversees management of federally managed fisheries including: walleye pollock, rockfish, flatfish, Atka mackerel, Pacific cod, the Pacific halibut and sablefish Individual Fishing Quota (IFQ) fishery, and Community Development Quota (CDQ) fisheries. Please note that Federal waters occur between 3-200 miles off-shore. Some fisheries, such as Pacific Cod, occur in both state and federal waters and require the management of both state and federal agencies. Other fisheries, such as Bering Sea red king crab and Tanner crab, are jointly managed by the State of Alaska and NMFS.

Helpful Information:

The Marine Advisory Program ( is a great resource for Direct Marketers. See the appendix at the end of the manual for licensing agencies.

Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute (ASMI) is a state agency that assists with many aspects of commercial fishing, including finding a market and listing your business in the annual seafood suppliers directory. For more information, visit their website: