Ocean Beauty to market Yukon chums


SeafoodSource staff

Published on
June 23, 2010

Ocean Beauty Seafoods of Seattle on Wednesday announced that it signed a multi-year agreement with the western Alaska village of Kaltag and Yukon River Gold LLC to market Yukon River chum, or keta, salmon.

The fish will be harvested using fishwheels powered by the river. Environmentally friendly fishwheels require no outside power, produce no greenhouse gases, eliminate bycatch by returning non-targeted species to the river unharmed and allow for targeted species to be bled live, resulting in a high quality product. The fish will be processed at a Kaltag plant built in 2000 using grants from the Denali Commission and matching funds from the village of Kaltag.

Crowley Petroleum and Lynden Transport will handle distribution through their network of barges, tugs, trucks and planes.

“These are great fish — high in oil content and omega-3s. The market needs the fish and the local residents need the market,” said Mark Palmer, president and CEO of Ocean Beauty. “We are privileged to work with the people of Kaltag, who have put up with a lot of economic hardship over the past few years. They’ve had a market for their fish only one year out of the past thirteen. We hope that by committing to a multi-year agreement we can be a reliable partner with the residents of Kaltag for a long time to come. If we do this right, everyone wins.”

Ocean Beauty is one of Alaska’s largest seafood processors, operating seven shoreside facilities in Alaska and one in Newport, Ore., two value-added facilities in Washington and eight fresh-fish distribution facilities in the western United States.

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