Obstacles: Fear of Change

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From the company's inception, there were challenges from outsiders who disapproved of US-Soviet economic ties.


In order for MRC to begin working with the Soviet Union, Talbot and crew had to obtain permits from the United States government. This would not be a simple task, as the government was divided on whether or not having economic ties with a Soviet country would be in the best interest of the US.  

Further, the United States government had put economic sanctions onto the Soviets for their treatment of Jewish emmigrants, making the possiblity for US-Soviet economic interaction even more complicated. In addition, the US had suspected that the Soviets were using their fishing vessels to spy on US naval operations. 

Despite these initial obstacles, the MRC was able to draw the support of governors across the country through the promise of the benefits for coastal communities and the US fishing industry. By 1978, the United States had approved permits for the Marine Resources Company to begin working with the USSR.

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American Processing Companies + American Fishermen

American processing companies stood in opposition to the goals of MRC. Processing companies were not supportive of the United States allowing a company to work with a communist country that would employ "slave labor". These same companies also had connections to Japanese fisheries, causing them to also not want another foreign country involved in the American fishing economy. 

Fishermen across the country referred to the US-Soviet joint fishing operation as, “smelling like a lot of rotten Russian caviar”. Disapproving fishermen were not the only obstacles that the MRC faced. The New England Fish Company sent attorneys to Washington DC to dissuade the US government from approving permits for the Marine Resources Company.