Wednesday, March 18, 2020

March 18, 2020

Alaska/Pacific Coast

Alaska fisheries update: Soft markets stall efforts
National Fisherman by Laine Welch - March 17, 2020
The Pacific halibut fishery got underway on March 14. A fleet of nearly 2,000 Alaska longliners will share a 17 million-pound catch during the eight-month fishery.
It was set to be a bumpy start in the face of jittery markets and transportation snags. No ferries and limited air freight meant no way to move the fish in many Southeast Alaska ports. A major processor there was not buying any halibut until April.
Blackcod also opened March 14. That market remains poor with a backlog of small fish in the freezers.
https://www.nationalfisherman.com/alaska/alaskas-fisheries-update-soft-markets-stall-efforts/

CDFU pushes for golden king crab fishery
Cordova Times by Margaret Bauman - March 17, 2020
Cordova District Fishermen United was in Anchorage this week urging the Alaska Board of Fisheries to develop a harvest strategy to reintroduce a golden king crab fishery in the northern and western districts of Prince William Sound.
https://www.thecordovatimes.com/2020/03/17/cdfu-pushes-for-golden-king-crab-fishery/


International
Everything You Need To Know About The Coronavirus And Seafood Safety
Forbes by Ariella Simke - March 15, 2020
The coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak is affecting industries worldwide, and seafood is no exception. With high anxiety and fear surrounding the virus, misinformation can spread quickly as everyone tries to make sense of a rapid change of lifestyle. Here’s what you need to know about how the coronavirus affects seafood safety, according to public health professionals.
https://www.forbes.com/sites/ariellasimke/2020/03/15/everything-you-need-to-know-about-the-coronavirus-and-seafood-safety/#353edb6e1885

Russian Producers Fear Coronavirus Control Measures Could Seriously Impact Pollock Catch
SeafoodNews.com by Eugene Gerden - March 18, 2020
The pollock fishing season in the Russian Far East is under a serious threat due to the measures that are being taken by the national government to prevent the further spread of coronavirus in the country.

So far, the Russian Rosrybolovstvo has already issued recommendations for domestic fish producers, returning from China and South Korea to their fishing areas in the Russian territorial waters, to enter Russian seaports for sanitary and epidemiological measures.  

These recommendations, however, have already sparked criticism from producers, as, according to them, this increases their transit time and leads to loss of fishing time. In addition, that results in the need of passing additional customs procedures.  

The situation is complicated by the fact that representatives of the Russian border service have already announced their plans to stop monitoring excessive weight of fish catch on those ships, which means they will not pass sanitary and epidemiological control and that will automatically lead to the suspension of their fish exports to abroad.

Due to this and the ongoing spread of the Chinese coronavirus, fishermen expect a reduction of their pollock catch this year. According to their predictions, only in the Sea of Okhotsk, which is a center of pollock production in Russia, the volume of catch may decline by almost 1 million tonnes this year.  

Currently there are more than 140 vessels which are involved in pollock catch in the Russian Far East.

The current situation has already sparked serious concerns from the Kamchatka regional authorities, which already sent a petition to the Russian federal government asking to prepare proposals that would minimize the risks of the spread of the virus, not complicating operations of the domestic fish producers.  
https://www.seafoodnews.com/Story/1166719/Russian-Producers-Fear-Coronavirus-Control-Measures-Could-Seriously-Impact-Pollock-Catch


Environment/Science
Endangered Cook Inlet belugas continue to decline, scientists aren’t sure why
KNBA by Kavitha George - March 16, 2020
Cook Inlet beluga whales are continuing to decline in number, according to a NOAA abundance estimate released last month. From Alaska’s Energy Desk, Kavitha George has the story of how the decline in belugas is both controversial and largely unexplained.
https://www.knba.org/post/endangered-cook-inlet-belugas-continue-decline-scientists-aren-t-sure-why


FYI’s
Seafood industry relationship with plant-based sector thawing
Seafood Source by Cliff White - March 16, 2020
Jen Lamy, the Sustainable Seafood Initiative manager at the Good Food Institute (GFI), a nonprofit dedicated to the promotion plant-based and cellular alternatives to seafood, meat, dairy, and eggs, thinks there’s room enough for both her sector and the traditional seafood industry to thrive in the U.S. retail and foodservice scene.
https://www.seafoodsource.com/news/supply-trade/seafood-industry-relationship-with-plant-based-sector-thawing
 

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