Trawl Nets, Seines, Inshore Weirs
Atlantic herring caught in the U.S. Atlantic with purse seines is a "Best Choice." The stock is healthy, management is effective and bycatch and habitat impacts are a low concern.
Atlantic herring caught in the U.S. Atlantic with midwater trawls is a "Good Alternative." The midwater trawl fishery catches unknown amounts of alewife, blueback and American shad, three overfished species that are collectively referred to as river herring.
Gulf of Maine Herring are excellent when prepared super-fresh. The traditional way to prepare is to grill , preferably over charcoal or wood coals, with a bit of bright oil. They are excellent when stuffed and baked, split and panfried. Some traditional European recipes call for them to be filleted and simply marinated in oil and herbs. Avoid using in soups or stews as they are simply too oily and boney. Care should be taken with fresh herring as they are delicate fish that bruise easily and have a limited shelf life.