Female Anglers Bring Significant Revenue Opportunities to the Fishing Industry

Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation and Southwick Associates found that increasing women's participation in fishing can provide an additional $1 billion in revenue to the sportfishing industry.

ALEXANDRIA, VA— On May 18, the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation (RBFF), a non-profit, hyped the idea that female anglers pose a significant revenue opportunity for the fishing industry, according to new research conducted by RBFF and Southwick Associates, a fishing and wildlife consultant.

The research was conducted to learn more about the financial impact of increasing female angler participation, and results found a 10 percent increase in women’s involvement in fishing, insinuating that this increase could provide an additional $1.0 billion in revenue for the sportfishing industry. This means each additional female participant is worth nearly $1,000 in annual income for the industry.

“We know through research that recruiting and retaining female anglers is critical to growing fishing and boating participation overall,” said RBFF President and CEO Dave Chanda in the May 18 press release. “The bottom line is, increasing female fishing participation is also good for business, and the industry stands to benefit greatly from focusing more on this growing audience.”

The research shows an opportunity to focus efforts geographically:

  • Women in the South and Midwest regions spent around $3.5 billion each (over $7 billion total) on fishing.
  • In the Midwest, female anglers spent an average of $1,106 annually.
  • In the South, female anglers spent an annual average of $796 per person.

Additional findings:

  • Despite the solid female angler representation in the Midwest, saltwater fishing has emerged as a driving force behind the financial stimulation female anglers bring to the industry. In 2021, female saltwater anglers spent more per capita than female freshwater anglers ($3.7 billion versus $6.6 billion).
  • Women spent more on special equipment, including vehicles, boats, and real estate, and more on saltwater fishing than freshwater fishing (35 percent compared to 22 percent).

RBFF recently launched the research-backed, Take Me Fishing “Find Your Best Self on the Water” campaign to help women reel in the benefits of fishing and boating. Through rooted, extensive research, this integrated marketing program aims to create awareness of fishing and boating among diverse new audiences and motivate participation.

RBFF is a non-profit organization whose mission is to increase recreational angling and boating participation, thereby protecting and restoring the nation’s aquatic natural resources. To help recruit, retain, and reactivate participants, RBFF developed the award-winning Take Me Fishing™ campaign to build awareness of boating, fishing, and conservation and educate people about the benefits of participation.

The campaign’s website features how-to-videos and an interactive state-by-state map that allows visitors to find local boating and fishing spots, helping boaters and anglers of all ages and experience levels learn, plan, and equip for a successful day on the water.

RBFF also offers its industry stakeholders many tools, including a Fishing License & Boat Registration Plugin to connect customers with the information they need in just one click and an embeddable Places to Fish & Boat Map to help customers discover places to fish and boat near them.

For more information on RBFF, Take Me Fishing, and the research on female anglers, please visit https://www.takemefishing.org/corporate/.


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