Bristol Seafood named “Business of the Year” for 2017 in Portland, Maine

Published on
November 17, 2017
Bristol Seafood

Bristol Seafood has been named “Business of the Year” for 2017 by the city of Portland, Maine, where the company has laid its roots since 1992. 

The distinction is one of four awarded by the Portland Development Corporation each year to companies and institutions that have seen growth or otherwise contributed to civic life in the city. Alongside “Business of the Year,” the city also recognizes a small business of the year (awarded this year to Think Tank Coworking), a new business of the year (awarded to Fork Food Labs for 2017), and a business that has demonstrated an economic development achievement (awarded this year to the Icelandic shipping firm Eimskip, which has its North American headquarters in Portland). The four companies will be honored at an annual ceremony set to take place on 30 November at Think Tank Coworking. 

The Bristol team is happy to receive high accolades from its home port, and to be among such good company, said Peter Handy, the seafood supplier’s president and CEO. 

“We are honored to receive this award, and to share the stage with great Portland companies like Eimskip, Think Tank Coworking, and Fork Food Lab,” Handy said. “Our neighbors at Eimksip, in particular, are a vital partner not just for Bristol, but Portland at large. The work done by Managing Director Larus Isfeld and his team has been an instrumental part of our recent growth.”

For Bristol, its Maine foundation has factored predominantly into the way it does business.

“Here in Maine, we believe anything worth doing is worth doing right,” the Bristol website declares, and that briny authenticity known to the state has influenced and strengthened the company’s uncompromising responsibility standards, Handy reiterated to SeafoodSource.

“We are proud to be a Maine company,” he said. “The values and authenticity the state is known for are traits that we work to uphold every day.” 

To be based in Portland, Maine, in particular – which is known for its vibrant culinary scene – has offered Bristol access to quality seafood, both from local boats and from fisheries afar, said Handy.   

“Our Portland location is strategic for us. We sit between the local fish auction and the international shipping terminal, so we can directly source quality products from local boats and quality fisheries around the world," Handy said. "In addition, Portland’s traditions around food and craftsmanship are at the very core of our brand."

The Maine-owned company made waves earlier this year after it became the first to earn a Fair Trade certification for seafood harvested in U.S. waters. From a sustainability standpoint, Bristol also holds a certification for the Marine Stewardship Counsel’s chain of custody standard and operates an SQF certified processing plant. In 2016, the company reported record sales for the second consecutive year.

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