Alaska/Pacific Coast

Gold king crab quota up
Bristol Bay Times by Jim Paulin – August 5, 2018
The Aleutian Islands golden king crab fishery opened this week, on Aug. 1, with a 16 percent quota boost.
http://www.thebristolbaytimes.com/article/1831gold_king_crab_quota_up

Ocean Beauty Seafoods Permanently Closing its Petersburg Facility
SEAFOODNEWS.COM – August 7, 2018
Ocean Beauty Seafoods has confirmed that they will be permanently closing their Petersburg facility. The plant has not been operational the past two seasons.

Ocean Beauty Seafoods will continue to operate their facilities at Excursion Inlet, Cordova, and Kodiak Island. The decision to close the Petersburg facility stems from the plant’s limited ability for fresh and frozen production. Prior to closing, the Petersburg facility was primarily a cannery.

“Over the past four years we have made significant capital investments in our Excursion Inlet facility to increase the daily fresh/ frozen capacity in anticipation of handling more of our Southeast volume there,” the company said in a statement. “We also have a multi-year agreement with the floating processor Ocean Fresh. This gives us the ability add capacity where it is needed and benefits our fleet the most. Our new configuration provides us the most flexibility and efficient model to deal with the extreme fluctuations that have become the norm for the pink salmon harvest.”

The company is confident that the closing of the Petersburg facility will not have an impact on their staff, customers or harvesters. An office and shop in Petersburg will remain open to provide fleet support services.
https://www.seafoodnews.com/Story/1112501/Ocean-Beauty-Seafoods-Permanently-Closing-its-Petersburg-Facility

National

NFI Expands “Seafood, See Jobs” Trade Education Campaign
SEAFOODNEWS.COM  – August 6, 2018
After rebranding its AboutSeafood.com website late last week to support the stories of American seafood workers, the National Fisheries Institute (NFI) has announced that they have now expanded their content offerings.

The “Seafood, See Jobs” campaign “tells individual stories of the American seafood workforce to illustrate that both importers and exporters fear the harmful effect of the trade policies the U.S. Government is imposing via tariffs on seafood.” The campaign initially launched with three “Featured Videos” and four “Faces of Seafood Jobs” videos on the AboutSeafood.com home page. Just a day after the launch NFI has added an additional two videos to their “Featured Videos” section and one more video to their “Faces of Seafood Jobs” section. The organization plans on updating the site weekly with new videos and content.

NFI hopes to portray the message that “seafood trade is not a simple matter of import vs. domestic.”

“To understand the negative impact these tariffs will have on American workers you have to go see them, you have to talk to them, you have to hear their concerns,” NFI president John Connelly said in a press release. “We’re brining these stories to policy makers so they understand; this is not a theoretical, economic chess game. These tariffs have the potential to do a lot of harm to the seafood community and that community’s jobs are right here in the U.S.”

Visit AboutSeafood.com to learn more. Or visit SeafoodSeeJobs.com to go directly to the campaign videos.
https://www.seafoodnews.com/Story/1112352/NFI-Expands-Seafood-See-Jobs-Trade-Education-Campaign

NMFS Notifies Regional Council of Nine Species Listed as Overfished or Subject to Overfishing
SEAFOODNEWS.COM by Susan Chambers – August 7, 2018
The National Marine Fisheries Service notified regional Councils recently than nine stocks around the country are overfished or subject to overfishing. Of those, five are salmon stocks on the West Coast.

The Klamath River fall Chinook, Queets coho, Juan de Fuca coho, Snohomish coho and Sacramento River fall Chinook have been listed as overfished. Upper Columbia River summer Chinook is listed as being subject to overfishing. In other regions, thorny skate and the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico stock of sandbar shark remain overfished. The Gulf of Maine/Cape Hatteras Atlantic mackerel stock is listed is overfished and also subject to overfishing.

The listing of the salmon stocks is no surprise. Unusually warm ocean waters in recent years — thank The Blob — had detrimental effects on many salmon stocks, particularly coho runs. In-river environmental changes and ongoing draught also affected stocks, especially the commercially valuable Sacramento and Klamath rivers fall Chinook runs.

The Pacific Fishery Management Council has already directed its Salmon Technical Team to develop rebuilding plans for each of the overfished stocks for the Council’s consideration. However, only two, the Klamath and Sacramento Chinook stocks, are completely under the Council’s purview. The other four are also managed via international agreements, so there is Council has limited ability to control ocean fisheries in waters outside its jurisdiction, NMFS said in a notice.

The thorny skate determination was made based on a 2017 stock assessment that used data through 2016. NMFS continues to work with the New England Fishery Management Council to implement conservation and management measures to rebuild thorny skate. Thorny skate is the only one of seven managed in the Northeast skate complex that is still overfished. The New England Council, NMFS and industry have successfully rebuilt three other species in the complex during the last 15 years.

The sandbar shark listing is based on a 2018 stock assessment that used data through 2015. It is managed under the 2006 Consolidated Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Fishery Management Plan.

NMFS said the data on which the Gulf of Maine/Cape Hatteras Atlantic mackerel overfished/subject to overfishing status was made using a 2018 benchmark assessment that included data through 2016. The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council must now adopt measures to end overfishing and approve a rebuilding plan, the NMFS notice said. The MAFMC has already been working on the issue and intends to address rebuilding the stock through a framework action to the Atlantic Mackerel, Squid and Butterfish Fishery Management Plan, including modifications to the 2019-21 harvest specifications. The Council in June received an update on proposals to rebuilding Atlantic mackerel in 3, 5, or 7 years and is scheduled to take final action on a rebuilding plan when it meets in Virginia Beach, Virginia, next week.
https://www.seafoodnews.com/Story/1112503/NMFS-Notifies-Regional-Council-of-Nine-Species-Listed-as-Overfished-or-Subject-to-Overfishing

Environment/Science

Possible algae bloom turns seawater red off Juneau
News Miner by Associated Press – August 2, 2018
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Juneau residents are seeing red in the waters of Gastineau Channel. A biological mass that may be an algal bloom is raising concern in the seawater off Alaska’s capital city, the Juneau Empire reported .
http://www.newsminer.com/news/alaska_news/possible-algae-bloom-turns-seawater-red-off-juneau/article_a83282b8-7914-5d07-9b2a-10fc3c90f6b2.html

Federal Register

North Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting
A Notice by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on 08/06/2018
The North Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) Trawl Electronic Monitoring Committee will hold a public meeting on August 23, 2018 through August 24, 2018.
https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2018/08/06/2018-16703/north-pacific-fishery-management-council-public-meeting

Ann Owens
Pacific Seafood Processors Association
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Phone: 206.281.1667
E-mail: pspafish@gmail.com; Website: www.pspafish.net
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August 7, 2018