‘Deadliest Catch’: The Origin of the ‘Quota Sell’ Sparks Curiosity Among Fans

by Joe Rutland
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Leave it up to “Deadliest Catch” fans to start getting curious about where the “Quota Sell” idea originated in the first place.

A recent Reddit thread titled “Can someone tell me who sells the quota to the captains?” kickstarted all of the curiosity and questions.

The initial poster wrote, “I can’t seem to figure it out. 1. do they pay for the quota? & if so who do they buy it from? 2. assuming that 1 is yes: can anyone buy quota (eg an investment firm) and lease it or sell it? 3. If you sell some of your quota (then) are you still responsible for it? (I assume you are if you’re leasing it)”.

‘Deadliest Catch’ Fan Replied In Detail To Redditor’s Original Post

Wow, this Redditor wants all the details. One of the first responses to these questions about “Deadliest Catch” and is rather lengthy. Here is part of that Redditor’s response.

“My understanding, which might not be completely correct, is this,” the Redditor wrote about “Deadliest Catch.” “When the fishery was in danger of dying because of overfishing due to no regulations, the fish & game authority stepped in (early 2000’s). F&G created Quota Shares, which could be applied for (maybe bought). Quota is a long-term thing, maybe permanent, that represents not an amount you can catch, but a percentage of the annual catch.”

Still talking about “Deadliest Catch” and quotas, this Redditor wrote, “Each year the health/abundance of the species determines how many pounds in total can be caught.”

Quota Issue Brought Even More Information, Responses

In response to this post, another “Deadliest Catch” fan wrote, “Part of this is when they switched from a derby (super dangerous, the whole fleet had a quota, fish til you drop because when the whole fleet hit the cap fishing was done), the current biggest fisheries got assigned a quota (that is) based upon previous season’s catches and some boats got no quota at all. Also, I believe if you don’t use your quota you risk losing it.”

The Discovery Channel show follows crab fishermen doing their best to catch plenty of them in the Bering Sea. Their work takes place during the Alaskan king crab and snow crab seasons. “Deadliest Catch” has been on since 2005 and continues to bring in new viewers each season.

It started airing Season 17 episodes on Discovery on April 20, 2021. There are currently seven fishing boats that have film crews aboard and shooting all of the action.

Captains for Season 17 shows include Josh Harris and Casey McManus, Sig and Mandy Hansen, Jake Anderson, Steve “Harley” Davidson, “Wild” Bill Wishrowski, Johnathan Hillstrand, and Keith and Monte Colburn.

“Deadliest Catch” has had a number of spin-off specials and books written by cast members.

Outsider.com