Kwik 'Pak Fisheries Pushes New Whitefish Species
Bering cisco from Alaska's Yukon River will travel to Brooklyn, N.Y., this week as part of the niche fishery's initial sales effort. Kwik 'Pak Fisheries LLC committed to purchasing this season's 10,000-pound quota and made one of its initial sales to Acme Smoked Fish Corp. in Brooklyn.
"These whitefish [C. Laurettae] are indistinguishable in taste and texture to a freshwater chub, a favorite of Acme's clientele for decades," says Buzz Billik, Acme's VP of sales.
Kwik 'Pak purchased Bering cisco from 14 fishermen this season and hopes to work with Alaska's Department of Fish & Game to increase next fall's Bering cisco quota from 40,000 to 100,000 pounds, says Jack Schultheis, Kwik 'Pak's general manager.
The company sent samples of the fish, which like the famous keta and king salmon make the 2,000-mile trek up the Yukon River, to markets from New York to Hawaii.
"We are working with ADF&G to develop this fishery as both a sustainable commercial operation as well as an economically viable fishery for the residents in our communities," says Ragnar Alstrom, commercial fisherman and executive director of the Yukon Delta Fisheries Development Association.