Brian Hagenbuch

Contributing Editor reporting from Seattle, USA

Brian Hagenbuch spent a decade in South America, where he was a journalist for Reuters and Time Out in Buenos Aires and Rio de Janeiro. He now lives in Seattle and works as a freelance writer and translator, as well as a commercial fisherman in Bristol Bay. 

Published on
February 22, 2019

The Bristol Bay Regional Development Association (BBRSDA) is expanding a marketing campaign it believes will make Bristol Bay sockeye salmon a nationally recognized brand.

In 2016, the association launched a pilot marketing program in nine grocery stores in Boulder, Colorado, U.S.A.. The association put its new eye-catching, salmon-hued logo on aprons, printed fish wrap, and stickers, and handed out recipe cards and branded mugs while their

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Published on
February 18, 2019

A lot can change in a few months, fisheries economists are quick to say, but early indications point to very favorable conditions for wild Alaska salmon prices in 2019, especially for sockeye, the state’s top-dollar species.  

Andy Wink, a fisheries economist who also heads the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association (BBRSDA), is happy with how the market is looking for the upcoming season.

“I think we’re

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Published on
December 19, 2018

The North Pacific Fisheries Management Council has adopted a new ecosystem-based plan to manage Alaska’s Bering Sea, where climate change is affecting coastal communities and commercial fisheries.

The Bering Sea is among the world’s most productive regions for seafood, but warming water temperatures and a lack of sea ice over recent years have forced the NPFMC to consider new approaches to its management of the sea’s

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Published on
December 7, 2018

The Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute (ASMI) is crossing its fingers that its request goes through for several million dollars in federal aid to defray costs of the trade war between U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration and China.

ASMI, a state-run entity, has requested USD 9 million (EUR 7.9 million) over three years as tariffs threaten to undermine the market for Alaskan seafood in China. The request was submitted to the

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Published on
November 28, 2018

Around mid-August this year, the fishing season in Southeast Alaska looked grim. Some areas had posted the lowest pink salmon landings since the 1970s, and the total pink catch would end up at just around 70 percent of the paltry 23 million fish forecast. For comparison, the 18 million pinks caught in 2016 prompted a disaster declaration from the federal government.

But at the end of August, something unexpected happen. Hatchery chum salmon from

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Published on
November 13, 2018

Last winter, something unprecedented happened in Alaska. For the first time on record, there was no sea ice in the northern Bering Sea, and biologists are now scrambling to figure out how that will affect scores of area fisheries – from crab to salmon to rockfish to various pelagic stocks – in the coming years. 

Because there are few fisheries in the northern Bering Sea, historically it has not been subject to as much surveying

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Published on
October 22, 2018

Alaska chum salmon has settled into a robust niche as processors make inroads on flesh markets and Japanese chum stocks continue to bottom out. 

In 2017, Alaska chums totaled a first wholesale value of USD 340 million (EUR 297 million), a sizable chunk of the total of USD 1.89 billion (EUR 950.5 million) for all salmon caught in the state of Alaska last year. For comparison, the state’s most lucrative species, sockeye salmon, had a

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Published on
October 3, 2018

A group of educators and professionals led by Transform Aqorau recently announced the formation of Pacific Catalyst, a partnership designed to foster new policies and a fresh generation of leaders in the Pacific Island fisheries. 

Aqorau, formerly the director of the Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency (FFA) and the CEO of the Parties to the Nauru Agreement  (PNA), is the founding director of Pacific Catalyst, which will count on

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Published on
July 27, 2018

Breakneck growth in Seattle, Washington is burying some of the city’s icons so quickly that there is an Instagram page with nearly 15,000 followers called “Vanishing Seattle.” It seems like around every corner, small businesses are being dozed under to make way for sprawling new multi-use buildings. 

But Seattle’s most visible mom-and-pop seafood outlet, Pike Place Fish Market – front and center at the iconic

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Published on
April 11, 2018

Getting ahead of the economic impacts that tend to accompany fisheries' closures is the basis of a new predictive model put together by a team of scientists from NOAA’s Northwest Fisheries Science Center (NFSC) and the University of Washington.

When fisheries shut down, entire communities suffer, the scientific team recognized, and oftentimes, funds doled out to help fishermen weathering rough patches arrive months after they are needed.

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