IPHC set to meet in Victoria, BC
Cordova Times - January 27, 2019
Final scheduling has been completed for the 95th session of the International Pacific Halibut Commission meeting, which begins on Jan. 28 at the Fairmont Empress hotel in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada.
Dutch Harbor Small Boat Cod Fishery Caught Federal Quota in 12 days, State Waters Now Open
SeafoodNews by John Sackton (with material from Jim Paulin, Bristol Bay Times) - January 28, 2019
Jim Paulin at Bristol Bay Times reports that the Unalaska NOAA fisheries biologist, Krista Milani, continued working intermittently during the shutdown to help the federal small boat pacific cod fishery.
That fishery closed on January 12th, having caught the quota of 3,214 tons (657,584 lbs).
Now the much larger state fishery for small boat pacific cod has opened with a Dutch Harbor district quota of 31.9 million lbs.
"Krista Milani has been recalled to assist with scale inspections and in-season monitoring of open fisheries. She is in the office the amount of time it takes to complete the work each day, somewhere between 2 to 4 hours," Julie Roberts, spokeswoman for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration told Paulin.
The Times also reported on the situation for the state waters fishery. According to Paulin, the small boat state waters cod fishing fleet keeps growing, with 35 vessels registered, an increase from last year's 32 vessels fishing with pot gear. And the quota is up too for the small boats in the fishery that opened last weekend.
The Pacific cod fishery for small boats under 60 feet long have received an increased quota this year, at 31.9 million pounds in the Dutch Harbor subdistrict, an 11 percent increase over the previous season's 28.4 million, according to Asia Beder of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game in Unalaska.
The Dutch Harbor state waters season for the small boats fishing with cod gear opened seven days after the closure of the federal small boat fishery on Jan. 12.
The increase reflects a decision this year by the Alaska Board of Fisheries, to increase the small boats take of all the cod in the Bering Sea from 6.4 percent to 8 percent, a move opposed by the larger vessels.
The Aleutian Islands small boat state waters P cod quota also increased, by 9 percent, from 12.8 million to 14 million pounds, Beder said.
The fish board's action will eventually boost the Dutch Harbor state waters small boat take to 15 percent, with a 1 percent increase annually over the next seven years, according to Miranda Westphal of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game in Unalaska.
The number of boats in the Dutch Harbor state waters cod fishery has doubled since its first year, when 16 participated in 2014.
Because of the state fish board's action, this year's harvest limits for small boat fishermen increased. But the overall quota in the Bering Sea was reduced by federal regulators for conservation reasons, at the expense of larger vessels including freezer longliners and trawlers in the offshore fisheries.
The Aleutian Islands small boat state waters cod fishery, which opened Jan. 1, also increased, by 9 percent, from 12.8 million to 14 million pounds, Beder said.
Prince William Sound Waters Open for Pacific Cod Today
SeafoodNews.com by Peggy Parker - January 28, 2019
The Prince William Sound state water fishery for Pacific cod using pots will open today at noon Alaska time.
The guideline harvest level (GHL) for the PWS Pacific cod state-waters season is 936,965 lb, with 85% or 796,420 lb allocated to vessels using longline gear and 15% or 140,545 lb allocated to vessels using pot or jig gear. That is 425 mt, slightly less than the 450 mt GHL in 2018.
Last year saw an 80 percent drop in cod landings in one year. In 2017, the GHL for PWS was just under 2,000 mt.
Yesterday at noon, the PWS Pacific cod parallel season closed to vessels using pot gear. That coincided with the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) closure of the Pacific cod pot gear sector in the federal Central Gulf of Alaska Area (CGOA).
After the closure, vessels were given 24 hours to deliver their catch before they coould participate in the state-weaters season. T
Area registration for the state-waters season is exclusive: no more than 60 groundfish pots may be operated per vessel, and each pot must display a buoy identification tag. Vessels may not participate in a Pacific cod state-waters season and any other Pacific cod season at the same time.
Following the closure of the parallel Pacific cod season, all groundfish pot gear must be removed from the water, except that pot vessels registered for the state-waters Pacific cod season may store groundfish pots in shallow water.
Area registration for the state-waters season is exclusive, no more than 60 groundfish pots may be operated from a vessel, and each pot must display a buoy identification tag. Buoy tags and vessel registrations may be obtained from department offices in Homer, Cordova, and Kodiak or by appointment in Seward (contact Homer ADF&G office). A vessel may not participate in a Pacific cod state-waters season and any other Pacific cod season at the same time.
For more information about closed areas contact the Homer ADF&G office; Stellar sea lions areas to avoid, contact NMFS in Kodiak.
USDA confirms major US pollock purchase
Seafood Source by Christine Blank - January 25, 2019
A USD 30 million (EUR 26.5 million) commitment from the United States government to buy Alaska Pollock will help mitigate the effects of the U.S.-China trade war on producers.
Russia Considers Adding Pollock, Herring and Cod to Quota Auctions This Year
SeafoodNews.com by Eugene Gerden - January 28, 2019
The Russian government will consider the possibility of extending the list of fish species, the quotas for which catch will be distributed through the auctions, according to recent statements of the Russian Federal Agency of Fisheries (Rosrybolovstvo) and some senior officials of the Ministry of Agriculture.
According to initial state plans, only crab quotas should have become a subject of auctions. However, these plans were revised later by the government, in an attempt to increase revenue from the seafood industry to the federal budget.
As planned, the list of fish and seafood species would include pollock, herring, cod and shrimp, all of which would be subject to quota auctions. in addition to crab, the list of fish and seafood species, the quotas of whih will be sold through auctions will include pollock, herring, cod and shrimp.
According to Rosrybolovstvo, up to 20% of quotas for their catch will be distributed at auctions this year, replacing the traditional historic principle of quota auctions. Moreover, the government also has not ruled out the possibility of increasing these figures by putting more quotas up for auction in years to come.
The Russian media recently reported that such a proposal has already received support from the First Deputy Prime Minister of Russia, the Minister of Finance, Anton Siluanov.
Still, despite the support from senior state officials, these plans have again sparked criticism from some leading Russian fishermen, who said their introduction may lead to the collapse of the industry.
City urges support for continuing Sea Grant program
Cordova Times by Margaret Bauman - January 24, 2019
City officials are urging the University of Alaska Fairbanks to continue providing an Alaska Sea Grant position for Marine Advisory Program faculty in Cordova to help support the community’s economy in challenging times.
Labeling and Marketing
Chum Salmon Pricing Appears To Be Softening
Tradex - January 28, 2019
In the twice frozen market, Russian headed and gutted Chum salmon pricing is between $3800 and $4000 per metric tonne..
SeaShare, Hook Line and Savor Seafood Start-Up Announce Innovative Partnership
SeaShare - January 23, 2019
Hook Line and Savor, a Seafood Start-Up based in Gloucester, MA will donate 5% of all profits to SeaShare for Hunger Relief Program
Seattle, WA – Today, SeaShare, a non-profit dedicated to providing seafood to food banks, announced they have begun a strategic partnership with Hook Line and Savor, a frozen seafood start-up based in Gloucester, Massachusetts, and part of the Gorton’s Seafood family.
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