Since 1823 the economy in the State was based on the very prosperous mining industry, but during the 1950 decade it became in crisis, fact that made local investors seek for new economical activities: Shrimp Fishing and Tourism.
The fishing activity was practice even before the pre-Hispanic era, when the natives by using a very simple method and taking advantages of the ocean tides used to catch crustaceous and fish, just closing the ocean natural entrance of water to the mangroves, but it was only and mainly to satisfy their own demand.
At the beginning of the 19th century they started to sell the product to a different market than the local motivated with the arrival of the new railroad routes and the inclusion of Mazatlan in the new maritime commercial circuits. This opportunity was taken by Mazatlecos to show the potential and quality of the product to external markets.
Years later the industry was favored by the appearance of laws that encourage the exploitation of marine resources, also the arrival of Japanese fisherman who contributed with new techniques.
The shark fishing was the first important activity in the port, in some way it was the starting point of flourishing in the Shrimp Industry. The Shark fishing had its pick time in the middle 30’s because the necessity of vitamin “A” that was use to heal injure; this vitamin was found in the liver of the shark. United States was the main buyer and Mazatlan was one of the main producers.
In 1921 an American citizen fished shrimp for the first time in the California gulf using a technique known as trawl but it wasn’t profitable at that time.
In 1938 the Japanese started working in Sinaloa with more advance techniques over the American companies; also as part of their work program they provided training for the Mexican fisherman so they could improve in to their own industry.
In the first season they signed a contract between the fisherman cooperative and Nipon Suissan Company in which they established to give 2 ships to the fisherman with the condition to sell the entire product to them. This same cooperative was able to buy its first own ship in 1939, it was built in Mazatlan.
This way the shrimp fishing industry was starting in Mazatlan along with other species like lobster, oyster and shark. In the 40’s it was a period of adjustment and new industries around fishing emerged, like shipyards, hardware stores, freezers and more advanced fishing fleets .
In the early 50’s the fishing industry was already grown up and mature so it left behind the mining and commercial industry, getting all the attention of the local investment and more fishing companies were created making a strong and highly united industry.
From the 14 existing fishing enterprises; only 2 were for shrimp, and the other 12 were mainly directed to shark and scale. The investment on the fishing industry in 1950 was unbelievable, also in this decade some of the local business men switch from shark to shrimp. In the same year 68 enterprises related with the fishing opened for business: 7 for Industrial frozen, 2 hardware stores specialize in boats, 1 tug, 1 shipyard, 57 for fishing, within 10 years there were 142 as follows: 14 frozen, 1 industrialize, 1 tug, 9 hardware sores, 2 shipyards and 115 for fishing.
By 1951 the shrimp industry in Mazatlan was the biggest in Mexico and the boat owners were in the vanguard.
Now days Mazatlan is considered the Shrimp Capital of the World because of the amount of shrimp that they produce and export to the world; the very well establish infrastructure aloud the industry to export great product at low cost. This title has been earn thanks to the richness of our Ocean, to the visionary investors who believed in a new industry and to the fisherman, hard working people who had made a fishing boat home, the wide ocean their city and fishing their love.
Shrimp is considered one of the most exquisite dishes in the world, very desirable in all styles: Mexican, Japanese, Chinese, French, Italian, etc.
In Mazatlan we are fortunate to have the freshest shrimp; any restaurant will have it in their Menu. You are also able to buy it by kilo (uncooked) and take it home, there is a fish market where you can get shrimp, fish, crab, lobster, oysters, clams, scallops, etc. at very reasonable price and you are sure there is nothing freshest than that.
The life style that prevails in Mazatlan is the life style that many people have dream with, great weather, beautiful beaches, art, culture, history, people, food and affordability. Mazatlan means to be able to LIVE IN PARADISE.
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