Alaska salmon fishery enters second MSC re-certification
The Alaska salmon fishery has entered assessment for its second re-certification.
If successful, it will become the first US fishery to earn MSC certification three times. The fishery, first certified in 2000 and recertified in 2007, includes chinook, chum, coho, pink and sockeye salmon within the state’s 16 geographical management units.
The Alaska salmon fishery operates within US territorial waters adjacent to the coast of the State of Alaska and in rivers that terminate in Alaska. Salmon are harvested by nets, including drift, set and purse seine, and by trolling and fish wheel; the latter operates like a water-powered mill wheel and includes baskets to catch fish. Approximately 75% of the fresh or frozen product is sold in Japan, while the remaining canned product is sold primarily in Europe and the US. Alaska salmon products bearing the MSC ecolabel are sold in 21 countries today.
In 2010, the annual catch was approximately 363,000mt; pink accounted for more than half of the harvest, followed by sockeye, chum, coho, and chinook.
The fishery is managed by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game and under a US Canadian Pacific Salmon Treaty.
Jim Browning, executive director of the Alaska Fisheries Development Foundation (AFDF) said: “Alaskans take pride in the successful management of our salmon resources to produce long-term sustained-yield as required by Title VIII of our State constitution, and it is important to have these accomplishments affirmed by the Marine Stewardship Council. The MSC label helps Alaska’s salmon harvesters and processors tell people around the world that Alaska takes good care of our marine and freshwater environments.”