Fri. Jul 22 2016

Gulf Shrimp Landings Up Sharply YTD But is Short On Brown and Smaller Sized Varieties  


Bristol Bay Reaches and Exceeds ADF&G Pre-Season Forecast  


Aleutian Golden King Crab Fishery Opens August 1  


Workshop Urges India's Shrimp Farmers to Modernize Operations to Defend Against EMS, Other Diseases


Seafood.com News Summary Friday July 22, 2016


Thu. Jul 21 2016

MSC Moves to Certify Supplier Labor Practices as Part of Chain of Custody, Certification Requirement


Plan Wants to Shift Mid-Atlantic Scallop Season Start Date to April 1 to Get Stock Data in Time  


Pacific Halibut and Sablefish Landings on Track


WesPac Defensive About Proposed Monument Expansion


Seafood.com News Summary Thursday July 21, 2016


Wed. Jul 20 2016

Pacific Seafood Hopes to Ship More Live Crab to China Using Cathay Pacific's Direct Flight from PDX  


Seacon America Launches THE CRAB Brand of Pastuerized Mexican Blue Crab Meat  


Long John's Brings Back $1.99 Meal Deal Featuring Alaskan Whitefish


Alaskan Pollock Surimi Production Down Over 3% in 2016  


Preferred Freezer to Open 4th Houston Area Cold Storage Facility Next March


Melanie Siggs Named GAA's Director of Strategic Engagements   (1)


Maine Lobster Marketing Collaborative Takes East Coast Promotional Tour to Washington DC


Seafood.com News Summary Wednesday July 20, 2016


Tue. Jul 19 2016

Minh Phu Gets Zero Duty Margin After US and Vietnam Settle Shrimp Dumping Disputes


CP Foods Sets Up Corn Processor for Indian Shrimp Feed Producers, Also Planning Shrimp Plant


Orca Bay Announces Five Internal Promotions in Executive Management Shuffle


India Expects to Improve Shrimp Broodstock Production Through Foreign Investments


Fortune Fish Completes Deal to Buy All Assets to Minneapolis' Coastal Seafoods


Japan's Live Russian Crab Imports Down Sharply Since Anti-IUU Fishing Pact


Alaska Senate Adjourns With no Budget Fix and 36 Months Left in Savings


Pew Wants Two-Year Fishing Ban on Pacific Bluefin Tuna With International Management Adrift


Seafood.com News Summary Tuesday July 19, 2016


Mon. Jul 18 2016

Seafood.com News Summary-BREAKING NEWS: US, Vietnam Reach Deal on US Imports of Vietnamese Shrimp


Competing Proteins: Beef, Chicken Market Slide Last Week While Pork Advances Slightly


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Gulf Shrimp Landings Up Sharply YTD But is Short On Brown and Smaller Sized Varieties

SEAFOODNEWS.COM by Michael Ramsingh - July 22, 2016

Shrimp landings out of the Gulf of Mexico through June are up sharply compared to last year’s figures but buyers and processors indicate that the catch is lacking in several key market sizes and shrimp types.

Through June, Gulf landings are up 18 percent from last year at 35.2 million pounds. Landings out of key producing states Louisiana and Texas were each higher from monthly figures compared to last year.

However, federal landing statistics do not break down the haul by type or size. This is where reports suggest several issues with the haul that are impacting the markets...

Full Story »

Bristol Bay Reaches and Exceeds ADF&G Pre-Season Forecast

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews]  By Peggy Parker - July 22, 2016

As of two days ago, the total run (catch and escapement) of Bristol Bay sockeye had reached 45,964,457 salmon, so it’s a safe bet that the Alaska Department of Fish & Game’s forecasted 46.55 million has been met by now.

Cumulative catches of all five river systems in the Bay last Wednesday were 34,744,736 salmon, far above the forecasted 29.52 million catch prediction. Escapement totals as of Wednesday, however, were below the 15.31 million salmon predicted, at 11,219,721 salmon. Those escapement totals will have increased by today and could exceed the forecast yet.

The University of Washington’s Fisheries Research Institute's (FRI) forecast for the run was 50.9 million fish, slightly larger than ADF&G's and the second biggest by FRI. The main difference between the two forecasts was FRI estimates more 2.2 age class sockeye...

Full Story »

Aleutian Golden King Crab Fishery Opens August 1

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Seafood News] By Peggy Parker - July 22, 2016

Alaska’s Department of Fish and Game announced August 1 as the opening date for the golden king crab season in the Aleutian Islands.  Catch limit for the 2016-17 season is a combined total of 5.545 million pounds.

Aleutian Islands golden king crab are managed east and west of 174° W longitude with a separate total allowable catch (TAC) for each area. East of 174° W the TAC for individual quota (IFQ) holders is 2.979 million pounds and 331,000 for community development quota (CDQ). West of the line the TAC is 2,011,500 pounds for IFQ and 223,500 for the Adak Community Allocation (ACA).

The season opens at noon on August 1 and will close on April 30, 2017.

Catcher-only vessels are required to carry an observer for 50% (by weight) of their harvested golden king crab during each of three trimesters (August 1 to October 31, November 1 to January 31, and February 1 to April 30). Catcher-processor vessels are required to carry an observer for 100% of all fishing activity...

Full Story »

MSC Moves to Certify Supplier Labor Practices as Part of Chain of Custody, Certification Requirement

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [News Analysis and Commentary] By John Sackton  July 21, 2016

The Marine Stewardship Council was founded on a simple idea: that global fishery management laws were insufficient for long-term sustainability of stocks, and therefore market pressure by NGOs on large retailers and consumers could create sustainable fisheries, even where governments fail to act.

This approach was largely successful, because governments, the FAO, International organizations and NGO’s all recognized that upgrading fishery laws to require catch limits, science based management, and limited entry was necessary to preserve the health of commercial fishery stocks.

The MSC was swimming with the tide in the 1990's and capitalized on this immensely.  They developed a complex standard, auditing practices, and helped spawn a certification industry in seafood that now extends far beyond the MSC.

Yet now, in major Western Countries, the tools for sustainable fishery management are largely in place, ...

Full Story »

Plan Wants to Shift Mid-Atlantic Scallop Season Start Date to April 1 to Get Stock Data in Time

SEAFOODNEWS.COM by Michael Ramsingh - July 21, 2016

The New England Fishery Management Council submitted a proposal to NMFS that asks to shift the start to commercial scallop fishing in the Mid-Atlantic fishery one month to April 1.

According to the Council’s plan, moving the start of the fishing season is so federal and third party researchers have more time to submit stock assessment findings so a comprehensive fishery management plan can be agreed upon prior to the season.

It would also reduce the need to for mid-season adjustments, which happens when stock data is submitted past deadline...

Full Story »

Workshop Urges India's Shrimp Farmers to Modernize Operations to Defend Against EMS, Other Diseases

SEAFOODNEWS.COM By Jagdish Kumar - July 22, 2016

A workshop held by India's Central Institute of Brackishwater Aquaculture urged the country's farmed shrimp industry to adopt safety protocols to reduce and control the threat of shrimp EMS and other diseases among operators.  

The national consultation on EMS was held in Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR)-Central Institute of Brackishwater Aquaculture (CIBA), Chennai, Tamil Nadu state.

Till today, India has an EMS free status, the workshop was conducted to develop a National Action Plan to prevent the possible introduction of the bacterial pathogen causing EMS to India...

Full Story »

Pacific Seafood Hopes to Ship More Live Crab to China Using Cathay Pacific's Direct Flight from PDX

SEAFOOD.COM NEWS By Susan Chambers - July 20, 2016 

Cathay Pacific Airways and the Port of Portland are expanding their freight services to Hong Kong in November - and that could open new markets for West Coast seafood. Two flights per week from Portland, OR are currently scheduled pending government approval.

The new Portland service would operate as part of a Hong Kong - Anchorage - Los Angeles - Portland - Anchorage - Hong Kong route every Thursday and Saturday...

Full Story »

Seacon America Launches THE CRAB Brand of Pastuerized Mexican Blue Crab Meat

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] - July 20, 2016

Maruha North America Group's subsidiary Seacon America added a line of pasteurized, all-natural blue crab meat from Mexico. 

Seacon will sell the product sourced from the Sea of Cortez under THE CRAB brand. The crab is a Callinectes species, which is usually sourced from the Chesapeake Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. 

The company is selling the crab packed in 6-pound cans. It is available for wholesale purchase in all the major crab meat grades including Jumbo, lump, special and claw meat...

Full Story »
Minh Phu Gets Zero Duty Margin After US and Vietnam Settle Shrimp Dumping Disputes
 
SEAFOODNEWS.COM by Michael Ramsingh - July 19, 2016

This story is updated from an earlier version by Reuters that we published on July 18, 2016 
 
Vietnam’s top shrimp exporter Minh Phu group was given a zero percent anti-dumping duty margin following a decision by the World Trade Organization (WTO) and deal between Vietnam and the US.

Minh Phu’s zero rate was determined following the agreement that ended a dispute between the US and Vietnam over the US the Department of Commerce’s controversial “zeroing” methodology it used to calculate dumping rates for Vietnamese shrimp exporters...

 

Full Story »

Orca Bay Announces Five Internal Promotions in Executive Management Shuffle

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] - July 19, 2016

Orca Bay Seafoods named several changes among its executive management team.

Dave McGee has been appointed Chief Financial Officer of Orca’s operations. McGee joined the company in March 2015 as Controller. He has over 15 years in the seafood industry.

Meanwhile, 21 year Orca Bay veteran, Scott Russell, was promoted to Vice President of Operations. For the past six years Russell was operations manager...

Full Story »

Alaskan Pollock Surimi Production Down Over 3% in 2016

SEAFOODNEWS.COM By Michael Ramsingh - July 20, 2016

Alaskan pollock surimi production from this year's "A" and "B" seasons topped 100,000 tons at the start of July, which is down over 3 percent from this time last year according to figures from NMFS.

Production reached 10,000 tons in a single between the last week of June and start of July. Still, combined surimi production out of Alaska is down from last year. 

Surimi production has trended lower all season according to NMFS figures. June totals were down 35 percent last month...

Full Story »

Melanie Siggs Named GAA's Director of Strategic Engagements

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] - July 20, 2016

The Global Aquaculture Alliance (GAA) named Melanie Siggs to a new position within the organization as the Director of Strategic Engagements.

Siggs role will be to create products and services that meet the GAA’s goal of adding value, and values, to the organization’s proposition while advocating, educating and demonstrating best practices. 

She will look at the development of non-core activities, identify opportunities to work with new partners and help lead teams to develop proof-of-concept work, prototypes and pilots...

Full Story »

Fortune Fish Completes Deal to Buy All Assets to Minneapolis' Coastal Seafoods

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] - July 19, 2016

llinois seafood distributor Fortune Fish & Gourmet finalized a deal to purchase the assets of Coastal Seafoods, a Minnesota-based seafood purveyor and retailer.

Fortune's intent to buy Coastal was first announced in June and is the latest in a string of acquisitions by Fortune. JDY Gourmet was purchased in 2012 and the company acquired Chef Martin Old World Butcher Shop Sausage in 2014...

Full Story »

Alaska Senate Adjourns With no Budget Fix and 36 Months Left in Savings

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Morris News Service-Alaska/Juneau Empire]  By James Brooks - July 19, 2016

JUNEAU — Lawmakers have officially ended the fifth special session of the 29th Alaska Legislature.

At 11:45 a.m. Monday, Senate President Kevin Meyer, R-Anchorage, dropped the gavel on the Senate’s session, following in the path of the House, which gaveled out on Friday. Under Article II, Section 10 of the Alaska Constitution, if the Senate had not gaveled out, it would have forced the House to return to Juneau for additional work.

With the House unable to make progress on a fix to the state’s $3 billion budget deficit, that action had been considered unlikely.

“It is disappointing … to stand ready to work and have our friends in the other body not be able to move forward,” said Sen. Anna MacKinnon, R-Anchorage.

MacKinnon’s remarks followed those of Senate Majority Leader Berta Gardner, D-Anchorage: “To say I’m disappointed feels inadequate.”

According to Gov. Bill Walker, the Legislature’s inability to pass a budget-balancing bill...

Full Story »

Newfoundland's Dorset Fisheries Plant in Trinity Bay Burns to the Ground 

A massive fire has destroyed the Dorset Fisheries processing plant located in the Newfoundland town of Trinity Bay. caught fire, which spread throughout the facility within minutes according to the town's fire chief. Plant manager Terry Reid said 70 to 80 people had been working at the fish plant, processing capelin. Nobody was injured in the blaze. At peak production, the plant employs about 240 people. This is the second fish plant in Newfoundland to catch fire this year since the Quinlan Brothers snow crab processing plant was destroyed in April.

Shrimp landings out of the Gulf of Mexico through June are up sharply compared to last year’s figures but buyers and processors indicate that the catch is lacking in several key market sizes and shrimp types. Landings have so far consisted of a lot of larger sized white shrimp while Louisiana's brown shrimp season was mostly a bust. Additionally, the catch has mostly consisted of larger sized shrimp and white shrimp, this has put upwards pricing pressure on many smaller count varieties and for brown PUDS.

In other news, Bristol Bay's total sockeye run has reached the ADF&G's forecasted 46.55 million run projection. Cumulative catches of all five river systems in the Bay last Wednesday were 34,744,736 salmon, far above the forecasted 29.52 million catch prediction. Escapement totals as of Wednesday, however, were below the 15.31 million salmon predicted, at 11,219,721 salmon.

Meanwhile, Sweden will have a tough time proving to a WTO Panel that imported North American live lobsters pose an environmental threat and should be banned from their market. We run a legal analysis of the case that shows precedents exist where the WTO requires reasonable scientific evidence to support such bans.

Finally, Alaska’s Department of Fish and Game announced August 1 as the opening date for the golden king crab season in the Aleutian Islands. The catch limit for the 2016-17 season is a combined total of 5.545 million pounds. Aleutian Islands golden king crab are managed east and west of 174° W longitude with a separate TAC for each area. East of 174° W the TAC for IFQ holders is 2.979 million pounds and 331,000 for CDQ holders. West of the line the TAC is 2,011,500 pounds for IFQ and 223,500 for the Adak Community Allocation (ACA).

Have a great weekend.

 

Full Story »

Minh Phu Gets Zero Duty Margin After US and Vietnam Settle Shrimp Dumping Disputes 

Vietnam’s top shrimp exporter Minh Phu group was given a zero percent anti-dumping duty margin following a decision by the World Trade Organization (WTO) and a deal between Vietnam and the US. Minu Phu's rate was readjusted to zero percent after the US recalculated the duty without using its controversial "zeroing" methodology. Vietnam originally challenged Minh Phu's rate before the WTO in 2010 on the grounds the calculation violated existing tariff and dumping duty laws. A WTO Panel agreed with Vietnam's challenge and asked Commerce to reassess the rates. This week the US and Vietnam settled the disputes and will no longer base Minh Phu's duty rates on the zeroing practice.

We run several stories from India today. First, the Charoen Pokphand Group will expand its operations to India with a corn processing facility and a shrimp plant. CP India's corn facility will supply the region's shrimp feed producers with raw material, which should cut production costs for Indian shrimp producers. The company also plans to establish a shrimp plant as part of a $400 million investment strategy it has for the Indian market.

Meanwhile, India's recent announcement to open up direct foreign investment in its aquaculture sector is expected to improve shrimp hatchery production. India's Hatchery Association says foreign investment funds will be used to improve shrimp broodstock output and quality that will compete with foreign suppliers. Though not the result of foreign investment, one India's shrimp producers The Waterbase announced a $3 million plan to build a shrimp hatchery in Andhra Pradesh. The company says the hatchery will produce 500 million seeds and should be operational by March 2017.

In other news, Orca Bay Seafoods promoted five of its staff members to various executive management positions. Dave McGee was named Chief Financial Office; Scott Russell was promoted to VP of Operations; Justine Reynolds will take over as Quality Assurance Director, and Larry Collings was elevated to Senior Purchasing Manager while Mike Holzberger will take over as imports manager. 

Finally, crawfish sales in Louisiana this past season were excellent according to local fish markets. Vendors credited good price points for some of the best sales figures in eight years.

Full Story »

News Summary July 18, 2016 
Today's Main Story: Bristol Bay Run Reaches Pre-Season Forecast of 40 Million with Catch at 30 Million Sockeye

Today’s news begins reporting that last Friday marked a peak in the daily sockeye landings in Bristol Bay with 2.4 million sockeye caught in 24 hours. That was followed by 1.7 million landed on Saturday. By Saturday evening, cumulative catches had reached 29.3 million sockeye with escapement exceeding 9.5 million throughout the Bay. The total run has by now reached 40 million as fishing is ongoing in several districts. Escapements are in the mid- to upper-end of the preseason forecast ranges in all districts except Togiak.

In other news, Massachusetts will conduct its first summer season cod stock survey in the Gulf of Maine. The Miss Emily made her first of two scheduled tows last week about seven miles off this South Shore port. The 55-foot gillnetter, skippered by owner Capt. Kevin Norton, has the primary mission of of assisting the state agency with its ongoing industry-based trawl survey, which aims to help determine the true status 

Full Story »

Newfoundland's Area 6 Shrimp Quotas Slashed 42%, Inshore Sector Allocated 70% of Harvest 

The total 2016-17 Northern Shrimp quota in Newfoundland's Shrimp Fishing Area 6 was cut 42 percent to 27,825 tons according to Canada's Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO). The quota will be shared between the offshore and inshore sectors. Offshore trawlers were allocated 23 percent of the quota while the inshore fleet was given 70 percent of the volume. The remainder of the sharing arrangement for the northern shrimp stock will see almost 4.5 per cent of the quota go to St. Anthony Basin Resources Inc. (SABRI), nearly two per cent to the Innu and about one per cent to Fogo Island shrimp fishermen.

James Iacino, President and CEO of Seattle Fish Co. was named Entrepreneur Of The Year 2016 in the family business category for the Mountain Desert region by Ernst and Young. Iacino is the grandson of Mose Iacino, founder of Seattle Fish Co. and represents the third generation of the family to own and operate the company. “I am humbled and honored for this incredible recognition and proud of our passionate and dedicated team that continue to drive our growth and work hard to sustainably feed people every day,” said Iacino.

In other news, the US restaurant sector saw its second quarter sales fall 0.7 percent in June according to data from TDn2K Black Box Intelligence. Same-store sales in June fell 1.1 percent, compared with flat sales growth during May. Since the beginning of the year, positive sales growth for restaurants was only reported in February.

Meanwhile, Newfoundland scallop harvesters in Grand Bank blocked access to Clearwater Seafoods this morning. The harvesters want answers from the Fish, Food and Allied Workers union and the DFO about access to scallop beds on St. Pierre Bank.

Finally, fishmeal prices in Peru and Chile are down with production up in 2016. In May, prices for Chilean and Peruvian fishmeal were at their lowest levels since 2014. Production from both regions is up this year. Peruvian production is expected to finish the year up 7 percent to 900,000 metric tons according to a Scotiabank report.

Have a great weekend.

Full Story »

Pacific Halibut and Sablefish Landings on Track  

SEAFOODNEWS.COM By Peggy Parker - July 21, 2016

Halibut landings in Alaska through July 21 totaled 10.6 million pounds, about 60% of Alaska’s catch limit of 18.2 million pounds.

In British Columbia, year to date halibut landings are 2.9 million pounds out of a total catch limit of 6.1 million, or about 45% of the annual quota.

Homer, AK is so far the port with the most commercial halibut deliveries to date -- 1.65 million pounds were landed there as of yesterday.  Kodiak is not far behind, with 1.59 million pounds, followed by Seward with 1.4 million pounds. Last year, Kodiak bested Homer with 2.8 million pounds delivered, compared to Homer’s 2.6 million. Yakutat and Cordova round out the top five Alaskan ports receiving Pacific halibut deliveries.

Sablefish or black cod landings in Alaska have reached 11.7 million pounds as of July 21, or 57% of the annual catch limit...

 

Full Story »

WesPac Defensive About Proposed Monument Expansion

SEAFOODNEWS.COM By Susan Chambers - July 21, 2016

The marine monument fight is not over. In addition to seafood industry battles on the U.S. East and West Coasts, Hawaii also is fighting to retain access to fishing grounds.

Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, in June proposed expanding the size of the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument (PMNM) fourfold.

In his letter to Pres. Barack Obama, Schatz stated, "Greater marine protection for the [Northwest Hawaiian Islands] and its surrounding waters will protect their unique ecology and their historical and cultural value, but this region also supports a variety of Hawai'i residents and businesses. I will not support an expansion proposal that does not adequately take these interests into account. Recreational and subsistence fishing; cultural practices and ocean sports; and commercial longline fisheries -- these traditional and customary practices all depend on access to and use of waters that currently lie outside the PMNM."

However, repeated requests by the Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council to Schatz and Pres. Obama to discuss the proposal have gone unanswered, according to a Council press release.

"We are dismayed that you did not consult with the Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council prior to distribution of your letters ...

Full Story »

Long John's Brings Back $1.99 Meal Deal Featuring Alaskan Whitefish

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] July 20, 2016

Long John Silver’s will bring back its $1.99 Fish and Fries Meal Deal for a limited time from July 25 through September 25 at participating locations. 

The meal includes a piece of wild-caught Alaskan whitefish hand-dipped in signature batter and lightly fried to golden perfection with a side of natural-cut fries.

“For almost five decades our customers have told us they can’t resist that crunchy, cravable signature battered fish.” said Marilyn Nicholson, Vice President of Marketing and Promotions. “At this price, you can buy a full meal with the change you shake out of your beach towel.”

Full Story »

CP Foods Sets Up Corn Processor for Indian Shrimp Feed Producers, Also Planning Shrimp Plant

SEAFOODNEWS.COM by Jagdish Kumar - July 19, 2016

Sensing huge growth in Indian aquaculture sector, CPF India Limited a subsidiary unit of The Charoen Pokphand Group (CP) will be expanding its operations in India with a corn processing plant that will supply local and international shrimp and animal feed producers. 

An official from CP's Feed Ingredients Department said "The raw materials will be sourced from the farmers directly, and will be processed in out plant that is coming up at Ketapally, Karnataka state

Full Story »

India Expects to Improve Shrimp Broodstock Production Through Foreign Investments 

SEAFOODNEWS.COM by Jagdish Kumar - July 19, 2016

The Indian government's decision to allow 100 percent foreign direct investment (FDI) in its aquaculture sector, Indian shrimps exporters can now get new technology that will help them in competing in global markets.

Currently, Indian shrimps exporters have to rely on broodstock from domestic firms, whose production and quality lags behind other countries including China, Thailand, Indonesia and some other southeast Asian nations.

Speaking on this development to a national business daily, L Satyanarain, president of All India Shrimp Hatcheries Association said, after this foreign firms can now directly set up brood stock multiplication centers and produce genetically improved broodstock over 2-3 years. This could bring down the import cost substantially...

Full Story »

Preferred Freezer to Open 4th Houston Area Cold Storage Facility Next March

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] - July 20, 2016

Preferred Freezer Services (PFS) announced its plan to open a fourth location in the Houston area that will take advantage of the higher volumes of goods entering the US market through Houston's ports. 

The Houston Gulf Coast facility will be located in Pasadena, Texas and is scheduled to open in March of next year. The completed freezer will boast 9.6 million cubic feet of space and 25,760 pallet positions. Additionally, the facility will feature multi-temperature capability as well as blast freezing capabilities; 18 dock doors; a 90-foot deep dock, and an oversized truck and container drop lot for easy truck loading and unloading. 

The facility, which is Preferred's 37th warehouse in the US, will offer full USDA import and export capability and include a multi-purpose room for additional value-added services. Consistency and product integrity will be maintained by a full on-site generator backup...

Full Story »

Maine Lobster Marketing Collaborative Takes East Coast Promotional Tour to Washington DC

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] July 20, 2016

The Maine Lobster Marketing Collaborative (MLMC) continued with its East Coast promotional tour this week as it met with some of Washington DC's notable chefs to market Maine lobster.

On July 18th the Collaborative partnered with celebrity Chef Kwame Onwuachi of the soon-to-open The Shaw Bijou to host a number of DC's most prominent chefs and media members. Together the Collaborative and Chef Onwunchi promoted the versatility of Maine lobster in the foodservice industry...

Full Story »

Japan's Live Russian Crab Imports Down Sharply Since Anti-IUU Fishing Pact

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Japan Reports] - July 19, 2016

Wakkanai’s live crab imports from Russia remained stagnant in May

Wakkanai Customs Office said on June 29 that live crab imports from Russia at Wakkanai Port in May plummeted 85% from the same month a year earlier to 15 tons, although crab shipments took place for the second month in row.

The office explained that the impact of the Japan-Russia agreement on the prevention of crab poaching/smuggling that went into effect in December 2014 is still weighing heavy on crab trade at the northernmost Hokkaido port...

Full Story »

Pew Wants Two-Year Fishing Ban on Pacific Bluefin Tuna With International Management Adrift

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] - July 19, 2016

The Pew Charitable Trusts wants a two-year moratorium on commercial Pacific bluefin tuna fishing after a stock assessment showed the population is at just 2.6 percent of its size and that overall fishing mortality remains up to three times higher than is sustainable.

The ban follows the inability of the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission and the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission to agree on a Pacific-wide recovery plan that will end overfishing and return the population to healthy levels...

Full Story »

Trident Diverts Fishing Tenders from Wrangell Plant, Limits Processing Because of Water Shortage 

Trident Seafoods was forced to direct two of its fishing tenders away from its processing plant in Wrangell, Alaska and limit its production activities on Tuesday to just three hours because of a shortage of treated water in the town. Trident took the measures after Wrangell's Borough Assembly officially declared the city to be in a state of disaster because its supply of treated water is dangerously low. Trident and Sea Level Seafoods are the two major processing plants that operate in Wrangell, which use about half of the town's treated water. Both plants have been working with the city to reduce their overall water usage, finding efficiencies with salt water where possible. Trident Southeast manager John Webby estimated the Wrangell plant had cut its treated water usage in half since last year. Managers at both Trident and Sea Level are now concerned about Wrangell's water treatment production capabilities and questioned if the utility could be relied on to deliver when fish production escalates next month. The water situation has been added to the Wrangell Assembly agenda for its next scheduled meeting on July 26.

Northern Canada's largest shrimp harvester Baffin Fisheries is worried that federal officials will reallocate a portion of their shrimp quota to other operators. Baffin is among the four First Nation fishing companies that operate in Canada's Nunavut territory. Baffin wants to ensure that decisions made by the Nunavut Wildlife Management Board on shrimp allocation are respected and not superseded by any new policies dictated by the federal government, which now includes the recent decision to scrap the LIFO management plan

In other news, the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission extended some of Maine's emergency Atlantic herring restrictions to Massachusetts to try to close a loophole that threatened to derail the summer supply of lobster bait. The Council voted to cut the number of days that herring boats can land fish each week within its jurisdiction from five to two, with Maine and New Hampshire representatives voting in favor of the landing day reduction and Massachusetts voting against it. "Without constraints on the landing (in Massachusetts) we would not make it into August, much less September," said Terry Stockwell of Maine Department of Marine Resources.

Meanwhile, the MSC announced its intention to develop a certification scheme that will address labor issues in the seafood supply chain. John Sackton writes that the MSC's dive into labor issues does not relate to the basic mission that their scheme was founded on. "The original success of the MSC came about due to the confluence of environmental and economic concerns. Labor issues - no matter how severe and complex they are, are economic and social issues, not environmental ones," Sackton writes.

Finally, the New England Fishery Management Council submitted a proposal to NMFS that asks to shift the start to commercial scallop fishing in the Mid-Atlantic fishery one month to April 1. The proposal is an effort to give federal and third party researchers more time to submit stock assessment findings so a comprehensive fishery management plan can be finalized before each fishing season. This would reduce the need for mid-season adjustments to the management plan. The shift is not likely to have a large impact tio Mid-Atlantic scallop fishing since most major industry stakeholders have been aware of the plan. Additionally, historical data shows that March and April are generally low producing months for a majority of the region's scallopers.

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Pacific Seafood Hopes to Ship More Live Crab to China Using Cathay Pacific's Direct Flight from PDX 

Pacific Seafoods hopes it can take advantage of new direct flights from Portland to China. Starting this November Cathay Pacific Airways will add two flights per week from Portland to China. The new Portland service would operate as part of a Hong Kong - Anchorage - Los Angeles - Portland - Anchorage - Hong Kong route every Thursday and Saturday. Cathay Pacific's newest and biggest freighter, a Boeing 747-8F, will make the route. Pacific, which already ships live Dungeness crab to Chinese markets via SeaTac, said the direct route from Portland should help the company expand its market share in China. "We realize that the service is currently slated for Hong Kong. We also have sales there," Pacific Seafood Group International Section Manager Larz Malony said in a letter to the Port of Portland Monday. "We hope that we will be able to take advantage of this new service and its success will also allow expansion into some Chinese airports."

North Carolina's commercial blue catfish producers say the USDA's Catfish Inspection program is running up production costs and threatening the viability of the fishery. The state's top producer, Murray L. Nixon Fishery said the USDA's new processing requirements essentially require the operator to build a new plant to meet compliance. The company said added costs to the industry could cripple local market interest in blue catfish, which could see commercial interest in the fish cease altogether.

In other news, Canada's sockeye catch estimates from the Skeena River predict a total return of 1.4 million fish for 2016. The figure is down from a projection of almost 3 million fish on June 30. So far, fishery scientists have not come up with an explanation for the lower-than-expected run.

Meanwhile, Maruha North America Group's subsidiary Seacon America added a line of pasteurized, all-natural blue crab meat from Mexico. Seacon will sell the Callinectes product sourced from the Sea of Cortez under THE CRAB brand. "Seacon’s THE CRAB is the same high-quality crab chefs from the Mid-Atlantic, the Carolinas, Texas, New Orleans and other Gulf States have always sought for their dishes," said Sherri Chambers, Foodservice Division Manager for Seacon.

Finally, Ireland's Ocean Harvest Technology wants to break into the US pig market by selling antibiotic-free feed produced from seaweed. The company, which has already successfully trialed the seaweed feed on Canadian pigs, wants to capitalize on the US swine industry's move away from antibiotics in its production process.

 

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Competing Proteins: Beef, Chicken Market Slide Last Week While Pork Advances Slightly

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Urner Barry Newswires]  Jamie Chadwick - July 18, 2016 

This recap of red meat, poultry and egg market action serves to provide our valued seafood subscribers with a simple snapshot of current conditions throughout competing proteins.

The pace of trade has certainly slowed in the beef market, as reported last week following lower cutouts again. The Choice cutout, which represents a composite value of the carcass based upon prices paid for primal cuts, fell 0.52% while Select was down 1.15%. In general, the doldrums of summer are said to be contributing pressure to the complex...

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