Alaska/Pacific Coast

Cook Inlet fishermen wait for direction
Concerns heard regarding salmon FMP but no action taken
Alaska Journal of Commerce by DJ Summers – October 16, 2016
Concerned fishermen gathered at the North Pacific Fishery Management Council’s October meeting in Anchorage to discuss a recent federal court decision that turns control of salmon fisheries in Cook Inlet, Prince William Sound and the Alaska Peninsula over to state management.

Crab quotas slashed in Bering Sea
Bristol Bay Times by Jim Paulin – October 14, 2016
Bering Sea crab fishermen are looking at a tough year, financially, after quotas were announced last week.
There’s no Tanner crab fishing. The snow crab quota’s the worst in 12 years, half what it was last year. And while Bristol Bay red king crab isn’t way down, it’s still 1.5 million pounds less than last year.


NOAA updates federal guidelines to end overfishing – October 17, 2016
NOAA Fisheries have concluded that the final revisions to the guidelines that federal managers will use as they routinely update the nation’s marine fisheries plans.


TINRO Estimates Show Increases in Pollock, Crab Stocks in Russia Far East
SEAFOODNEWS.COM by John Sackton – October 17, 2016
The latest report from TINRO – the Russian Far Eastern Research Center – shows improvements in the biomass of both groundfish and crab in the Sea of Okhotsk.

At the same time, Russia has announced an increase in TACs for both pollock and crab.  For pollock, Russia has increased the TAC from 1.72 million tons in 2016 to 1.84 million tons in 2017, an increase of around 3%.  For the MSC approved Sea of Okhotsk fishery, the TAC will be 1.07 million tons, with the rest of the pollock TACs in the Kuriles and the the Bering Sea.

For crab, total TAC for all species is up to 73,500 tons, which is 6800 tons more than last year.  The King crab area of Western Kamchatka opened in 2013 after being closed for several years.  TINRO says the biomass there is higher than when it first opened.

However, there is a warning sign because much of the catch this year may be older crab that has not molted, and there are less recruits to the fishery, ie less non-target males and females.

Snow crab is seeing the reverse pattern.  There is a reduction in overall legal males, but the number of juvenile males and females has increased.


New Southeast atlas identifies valuable habitat and threats
Alaska Dispatch News by Elizabeth Jenkins – October 13, 2016
Audubon Alaska recently released an atlas showing where the most valuable salmon streams and bird habitat are located in Southeast. It also identifies the biggest threats to those areas.

S. Korea Succeeds in Completely Controlled Culture of Pollack
KBS World Radio – October 12, 2016
The Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries announced that South Korea succeeded, for the first time in the world, in the production of Alaska Pollack in a completely controlled culture.

UBC’s marine lab faces the axe as U.S. funding of sea lion study dries up
Vancouver Sun by Larry Pynn – October 13, 2016
A unique, long-term study involving Steller sea lions in Burrard Inlet faces being scrapped after the U.S. government stopped funding the project.

Labeling and Marketing

3MMI – Remaining Halibut Quota Left on Table, Arrowtooth Flounder Inventories Sparse
TradexFoods – October 17, 2016
3-Minute Market Insight:
Production space for Arrowtooth Flounder before Chinese New Year is reportedly fully booked – we will provide another update as fishing efforts strengthen in the coming months. With 3 weeks remaining in the Alaskan and Canadian Pacific Halibut Fishery, it looks like there will be some of the quota left on the table.

ASMI Promoting Alaskan Red King and Snow Crab Ahead of This Weekend’s Season Opener
SEAFOODNEWS.COM – October 14, 2016
The Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute is promoting the availability of Alaskan crab with the state’s red king crab and snow crab fisheries set to start this weekend.

On October 15, Alaska’s major red king and opilio crab seasons will open. The state’s bairdi, or Tanner, crab fishery will not open this year because of low abundance of the stock.

Quotas for Alaska’s red king and snow crab seasons are reduced this year also because of lower abundance. The Bering Sea red king crab quota is down 15 percent from last season with this year’s snow crab catch cut 50 percent  compared to the 2015/16 season.

For the 2016 – 2017 season, the Total Allowable Catch (TAC) includes Bering Sea snow (opilio) crab, with a quota of 21.57 million pounds, and Bristol Bay’s red king crab, with a quota of 8.469 million pounds.

Still, ASMI is promoting the availability of fresh Alaskan crab in the market starting this weekend.

“The icy waters of Alaska produce some of the most flavorful crab in the world,” said Tyson Fick, communications director, Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute. “Just as important as its taste, wild Alaska crab is sustainably caught as part of the conservation ethic outlined in the Alaska State Constitution, which ensures that delicious Alaska crab and all Alaska seafood will continue to be available for generations to come.”


A skeptic looks at marine protected areas
Youtube by Ray Hilborn – October 17, 2016

Ann Owens
Pacific Seafood Processors Association
Office Manager
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October 17, 2016