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A consimer survey panel, consisting of representative households throughout the United States, recorded their fishery product purchases for a 12-month period, beginning in February 1969. They were participants in a study conducted under the aegis of the Bureau of Commercial Fisheries, Division of Economic Research. This paper deals mainly with study findings respecting the consumption of major species of shellfish--at home and away from home. Findings of the study indicate marked regional preferences for individual shellfish items. For example, oysters are consumed in South Atlantic states at nearly double the national per capita rate. Similarly, clams enjoy a high rate of consumption in Middle Atlantic and New England areas. All of which suggests an important correlation between consumption and tradition, as well as a persistent tendency for seafood varieties-- particularly those consumed in a "fresh" form-- to be consumed in the area of catch. The study also indicated an association between hgih income households and shellfish consumption-- with oysters a single notable exception. Age of consumer, too, has an apparent bearing on shellfish consumption, as it was found that older consumers are more disposed toward consumption of these products. With respect to consumption away from home-- it appears that half or more of the crabs and lobsters are consumed in meals outside the home, but the majority consumed of other products examined, was at home.


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