Search Results For:

Start:  
End:  
  Search Title?
  Search Article?
  Search Tags?

The search returned the most recent 100 results.

Apr 21 - Seafood.com News Summary Friday April 21, 2017


Apr 21 - Icelandic Group Puts Major UK Seafood Distributor Seachill Up For Sale


Apr 20 - Seafood.com News Summary Thursday April 20, 2017


Apr 20 - Feds Close Flatfish, Rockfish, Sablefish Trawling in Gulf of Alaska 2 Weeks Earlier Than Last Year


Apr 20 - Scientists Spawn Pacific Sardines In Captivity; Results Could Inform Potential for Good Fishing


Apr 19 - Seafood.com News Summary Wednesday April 19, 2017


Apr 19 - Russia Squeezed by High Salmon Prices as Chilean Companies Cut Back Shipments


Apr 18 - Seafood.com News Summary Tuesday April 18, 2017


Apr 17 - Seafood.com News Summary Monday April 17, 2017


Apr 17 - High Liner Recalls Captain's Crew Fish Strips for Undeclared Allergen


Apr 13 - Seafood.com News Summary Thursday, April 13, 2017


Apr 12 - Seafood.com News Summary Wednesday April 12, 2017


Apr 12 - PFMC Approves Limited Salmon Seasons; Effects Ripple to Other Fisheries


Apr 11 - Seafood.com News Summary Tuesday April 11, 2017


Apr 11 - Icelandic Group Sheds Another Asset With Sale of Belgian Subsidiary Gadus to Steinasalir


Apr 10 - Seafood.com News Summary Monday April 10, 2017


Apr 10 - Seafood Harvesters of America Opposes Modern Fish Act


Apr 10 - Chuitna Coal Suspension Fails to Resolve State Debate Over Mining and Salmon Habitat


Apr 7 - Seafood.com News Summary Friday April 7, 2017


Apr 6 - Seafood.com News Summary Thursday April 6, 2017


Apr 5 - Seafood.com News Summary Wednesday April 5, 2017


Apr 5 - Major Fishery and Processor Associations Ask Gov. Inslee's Council Recommendations be Withdrawn


Apr 4 - Seafood.com News Summary Tuesday April 4, 2017


Apr 3 - Seafood.com News Summary Monday April 3, 2017


Apr 3 - Hilborn Study Redefines Forage Fish Predator Relationships; Suggests Fishing Pressure Lesser Factor


Apr 3 - 2017 Louisiana Seafood Cook-Off Will Take Place in Lafayette


Mar 31 - Seafood.com News Summary Friday March 31, 2017


Mar 31 - With Surge in Pangasius Sales to China, Gov't Cracks Down on Smuggling, Will Require Traceability


Mar 31 - Carlos Rafael Pleads Guilty; Up to 13 New Bedford Vessels Could be Seized by Government


Mar 31 - DFO Slashes Inshore Northern Shrimp Quota by 62% in Area 6


Mar 30 - Seafood.com News Summary Thursday March 30, 2017


Mar 30 - Long John Silver's Hires Former Smashburger Exec Angela Sanders as Chief Marketing Officer


Mar 29 - Seafood.com News Summary Wednesday March 29, 2017


Mar 28 - Seafood.com News Summary Tuesday March 28, 2017


Mar 28 - Groundfish Enterprise Allocation Council Wants Newfoundland to Temper Expectations of Cod Rebound


Mar 28 - Lakes Farm Raised Catfish Issues Recall Notice to USDA for Fish that Contain Antibiotics


Mar 27 - Seafood.com News Summary Wednesday March 27, 2017


Mar 27 - WWF-Canada Supports Parliament's Standing Committee Recommendations on Capelin Stock Assessments


Mar 24 - Seafood.com News Summary Friday March 24, 2017


Mar 24 - EU Funding Same DNA Technology That Identified Horsemeat to Properly Label Imported Snapper


Mar 23 - Seafood.com News Summary Thursday March 23, 2017


Mar 23 - Thai Union Expands Work Against Human Trafficking in Supply Chain to Include Global Retailers


Mar 22 - Seafood.com News Summary Wednesday, March 22, 2017


Mar 21 - Seafood.com News Summary Tuesday, March 21, 2017


Mar 21 - Mariner Seafood Prepared for Retail Distribution of GO WILD Brand That Extends Fresh Shelf Life


Mar 21 - Boston Show Upbeat Again this Year as Footprint Expands


Mar 20 - Seafood.com News Summary Monday, March 20, 2017


Mar 17 - Seafood.com News Summary Friday, March 17, 2017


Mar 17 - Lerøy Seafood Group Objects to Norwegian Restructuring That Will Cost it 20% of Its Cod Quota


Mar 17 - Japanese Fish Sellers Adapt to Changing Market with More Prepared Items, Different Species of Fish


Mar 17 - Commentator Gives up In Confusion Over Sustainable Fish Guides; Just a Personal Choice, She Says


Mar 16 - Seafood.com News Summary Thursday March 16, 2017


Mar 16 - Crabmeat Importer Blue Star Implments Cloud-Based Supply Chain Tracking for Indonesian Blue Crab


Mar 16 - Seal Predation Seen Impacting Snow Crab Stocks in Newfoundland


Mar 16 - Plea Hearing for Carlos Rafael Delayed to March 30, 2017


Mar 15 - Seafood.com News Summary Wednesday March 15, 2017


Mar 15 - First In-Season Cod Closure Announced for Some Southeast AK Waters


Mar 14 - Seafood.com News Summary Tuesday March 14, 2017


Mar 13 - Seafood.com News Summary Monday March 13, 2017


Mar 10 - Seafood.com News Summary Friday March 10, 2017


Mar 9 - Seafood.com News Summary Thursday March 9, 2017


Mar 8 - Seafood.com News Summary Wednesday March 8, 2017


Mar 7 - Seafood.com News Summary Tuesday March 7, 2017


Mar 6 - Seafood.com News Summary Monday March 6, 2017


Mar 6 - Sustainable Fisheries Partnership Trains 15,000 Shrimp and Tilapia Farmers Asia, South Pacific


Mar 6 - Mariner Seafood to Debut GO WILD Brand of Vacum Packed Line of Wild Caught Seafood at Boston


Mar 3 - Seafood.com News Summary Friday March 3, 2017


Mar 2 - Seafood.com News Summary Thursday March 2, 2017


Mar 2 - John Sevier Named New President of International Seafoods - Alaska


Mar 2 - West Coast Trawlers Receive Permits to Target Rebuilt Rockfish Stocks


Mar 1 - Seafood.com News Summary Wednesday March 1, 2017


Mar 1 - Long John Silver's Ready to Sell 30 Million Pieces of Fish for Lent


Feb 28 - Seafood.com News Summary Tuesday February 28, 2017


Feb 27 - Seafood.com News Summary Monday February 27, 2017


Feb 27 - Skyrocketing Pangasius (Basa) Prices in Vietnam May Mean an Increase in Chinese Tilapia Prices


Feb 27 - Mariner Seafood Becomes Funding Partner for GSSI; Backs Global Benchmark Tool


Feb 24 - Seafood.com News Summary Friday February 24, 2017


Feb 24 - VIDEO: Red Chamber Argentina Agrees to Shrimp Vessel Observers; Iceland’s Fishermen Get Back to Work


Feb 24 - MSC Streamlines Assessment in Pilot Program for Echebastar Indian Ocean Skipjack Tuna


Feb 23 - Seafood.com News Summary Thursday February 23, 2017


Feb 23 - Adak's Seafood Plant Not Processing Bering Sea Cod Because of Damage, Not Over Deliveries Lawsuit


Feb 22 - Seafood.com News Summary Wednesday February 22, 2017


Feb 22 - Hello Fresh's Meal Kit Delivery Service Commits to Monterey Bay's Seafood Watch Program


Feb 22 - State-Waters Cod Season Opens to Pot Gear as Federal Pot Gear Season Closes in Gulf of Alaska


Feb 22 - EDF Says Smart Reforms are Key to Global Fish Recovery, Even with Climate Change


Feb 21 - Seafood.com News Summary Tuesday February 21, 2017


Feb 21 - Texas' Perciformes Group Sends First Harvest of Farmed Sablefish To Washington DC Market


Feb 20 - Seafood.com News Summary Monday February 20, 2017


Feb 20 - Iceland's Commercial Fishermen Resume Fishing as Labor Deal Gets Narrow Approval


Feb 20 - Effective Management Can Navigate Climate Impacts on the Fisheries


Feb 17 - Seafood.com News Summary Friday February 17, 2017


Feb 17 - Sharp Increase in Iceland's Capelin Quota Could End Fishermen's Strike


Feb 16 - Seafood.com News Summary Thursday February 16, 2017


Feb 15 - Seafood.com News Summary Wednesday February 15, 2017


Feb 15 - HB Grandi Says Japan's Roe Market Could Benefit as Iceland Raises Capelin Quota to 299,000 MT


Feb 14 - Seafood.com News Summary Tuesday February 14, 2017


Feb 13 - Seafood.com News Summary Monday February 13, 2017


Feb 13 - Icelandic Strike Drives Fresh Norwegian Cod Prices in UK up 40%; Threatening Supermarket Profits


Feb 13 - Task Force Eyes $1 billion Alaska Maraculture Industry


Feb 10 - Seafood.com News Summary Friday February 10, 2017


Upcoming Events cal

Titter UB Shop Youtube Facebook
Contact

Urner Barry
P.O. Box 389
Toms River, NJ 08754
1-732-240-5330

Seafood.com
8 White Pine Lane
Lexington, MA 08754 02421
1-732-240-5330, 781-861-1441


Advertising

Nicole Christie
1-732-240-5330 ext. 275
nchristie@urnerbarry.com

Janice Schreiber
1-732-240-5330 ext. 280
janice@urnerbarry.com

Terence Wells
1-732-240-5330 ext. 284
twells@urnerbarry.com

Editorial

John Sackton
Editor and Publisher
8 White Pine Lane
Lexington, MA 02421
Voice: 781-861-1441
 Fax 781-533-9480
jsackton@seafood.com

Michael Ramsingh
Production Editor
182 Queens Blvd
Toms River, NJ 08754
Voice: 732-575-1983
michaelramsingh
@seafood.com


Peggy Parker
Science and Sustainability Editor
PO Box 872
Deming, WA 98244
Voice: 360-592-3116
peggyparker
@seafood.com


Support and Questions
1-800-443-5330
support@seafood.com

Subscription Info
1-800-932-0617
sales@seafood.com

Terms

License Agreement

News Summary April 21, 2017

Today's Main Story: NMFS Put Councils on Notice about Overfishing or Overfished Conditions on Bigeye, Four Other Stocks

Leading the headlines today is word that the National Marine Fisheries Service has notified regional councils that five species are subject to overfishing and/or are overfishing or overfished, requiring measures be put in place to remedy the situations. Bigeye tuna in the Western and Central Pacific and South Atlantic golden tilefish are subject to overfishing, according to NMFS. South Atlantic blueline tilefish remains subject to overfishing. Pacific Bluefin tuna in the North Pacific Ocean and South Atlantic red snapper are both overfished and also subject to overfishing.

In other news, Russian pollock producers plan to significantly increase the volume of their supplies to the EU market during the next several years, according to an official spokesman of the Russian Federal Agency of Fisheries (Rosrybolovstvo). That will be

Full Story »

Icelandic Group Puts Major UK Seafood Distributor Seachill Up For Sale 

SEAFOODNEWS.COM by Michael Ramsingh - April 21, 2017

The Board of Icelandic Group has initiated a sales process for its UK operations, Seachill. This is the latest operation that Icelandic Group has decided to sell off.

 Seachill is a leading supplier of chilled fish to the UK retail market since it was founded in 1998. The business has grown to be one of the largest chilled fish processors in the UK, with well-invested facilities and an established supply chain Icelandic Group said.

Seachill owns The Saucy Fish Co. brand which has a fast growing reputation globally. The brand recently expanded to the North American market.  In 2017, The Saucy Fish Co. entered the frozen retail category with a line of ready to cook frozen products.

Full Story »

Feds Close Flatfish, Rockfish, Sablefish Trawling in Gulf of Alaska 2 Weeks Earlier Than Last Year

SEAFOODNEWS.COM  by John Sackton  April 20, 2017

NMFS has closed the deepwater trawl fisheries in the Gulf directed at rockfish, sablefish, flatfish and arrowtooth flounder effective April 13th.

The fishery has come up against its halibut bycatch limit of 256 metric tons. 

This is a temporary closure, and the fishery will reopen May 15th, with their third-period allocation.

The fishery will close at the latest on July 1st, under the management plan.

The closure this year is two weeks earlier than last year's closure..

Full Story »

European Whole Salmon Floods US and Cuts into Canada's Market Share

European salmon producers, beset with sea lice problems, appear to be harvesting fish early and flooding the US market with unusual amounts of smaller whole fish. This has had an impact on Canadian producers, who normally dominate the whole fish market in the US. while demand for salmon in the US and other global markets has been exceptionally high, this particular rise in European shipments to the US market has not been totally demand driven. Rather, it appears US buyers have opted to import more whole salmon from Europe in 2017 because the surge in available supplies lowered prices to competitive levels compared to Canadian product.

More than 750,000 pounds of West Coast rockfish have been landed in roughly a month under an exempted fishing permit, creating a small boon for fishermen and markets. The harvest included only four Chinook salmon and no catches of green sturgeon or eulachon smelt, both ESA-listed species. Five vessels made 17 trips since the beginning of March. Oregon Trawl Commission Director Brad Pettinger said the success of a midwater rockfish fishery + something common when he was fishing more than 20 years ago + is a validation of sacrifices made since 2000. "We're on the verge of placing the last piece of the puzzle to rebuilding this fishery," Pettinger said. "It's been a lot of work over the last decade-plus."

In other news, we run a Letter to the Editor from Garrett Fine, the cooking business unit manager for Laitram Machinery who disagrees with claims from our April 18 article that said some in Japan think steam cooking snow crabs hurts the quality of the product. "Myself and my colleagues have literally been in the plant with one of the “Big 3” Japanese buyers, have feedback from our customers’ other Japanese buyers, as well as the plants’ QC department and owners, Canadian, and US buyers. The overwhelming feedback is that the product quality is better; in fact, they say the product texture, color, taste, and extractability are all much better," Fine writes.

Meanwhile, Russia may face a shortage of salmon this year, due to the lack of supplies from Norway and the inability of producers from the Faroe Islands, Chile and Iceland to fill the vacant niche according to federal fishery officials at Rosrybolovstvo. Among the issues causing the shortages is the inability of the domestic industry and producers in South America to replace imports from more than 500 Norway salmon producers and importers, which were banned from exporting fish to the Russia at the beginning of 2015 due to sanctions.

Finally, the New England Fishery Management Council has initiate changes that will attempt to reduce the conflict between large and small boat scallopers in the Northern Gulf of Maine. The management council says there is a "critical need to initiate surveys and develop additional tools to better manage the area." It also says the new rules could include limiting some boats from fishing in the area until the total scallop population can be more accurately determined.

Full Story »

Japanese Crab Negotiations with Newfoundland Full of Uncertainty

Sources in Japan say that the negotiations with Newfoundland snow crab packers are in a high state of uncertainty. Although there were reports of a price of $6.95 between one or two packers and a Japanese buyer, others in Japan say there was a condition on this contract that limited the amount of product to only a portion of what the buyer purchases in the first week. Overall the Japanese see great uncertainty in the market and expect the situation to clarify more once production is in full swing in both Newfoundland and the Gulf.

Nearly half of all the natural World Heritage sites on the planet are being ravaged by poachers who are driving some endangered animals towards extinction, according to a report from the World Wildlife Fund. The illegal wildlife trade was estimated to be worth some $19 billion, making it the fourth largest international criminal trade after drugs, guns and human trafficking, according to the ‘Not For Sale’ report. The report warned that species listed on the landmark Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (Cites) are being killed. "The current international approach to preventing illegal harvesting of Cites-listed species in World Heritage sites is not working, and stakeholders must redouble their efforts and address all parts of the wildlife trafficking value chain," the report said.

In other news, fishermen are petitioning the New England Fishery Management Council to protect tuna and other fisheries from the herring fleet by agreeing to have measures asking for year-round closures of up to 50 miles east of the Cape. “There’s a strong feeling that fisheries that used to happen here have been displaced by 10 years of intense herring removal,” said John Pappalardo, executive director of the Cape Cod Commercial Fishermen’s Alliance, and a member of the New England council and its herring committee.

Meanwhile, Bristol Seafood in Maine is looking to capitalize on the growing interest in the social responsibility of seafood as its New England scallops are the first domestic fishery in the country to earn certification from Fair Trade USA. To achieve the certification, companies need to submit to an audit and interviews to make sure the food is produced with fair working conditions and environmental stewardship along the supply chain. Fair Trade USA also certifies shrimp from Mexico, yellowfin tuna from Indonesia, and skipjack and yellowfin tuna from Maldives. "There's a certain sanctity to food when it comes to the story about it," said Peter Handy, president of Bristol "It tastes better the more you know."

Finally, Maruha Nichiro expects higher costs of purchasing seafood from overseas suppliers to cut into its profits by about 12 percent. Maruha's purchasing costs abroad are rising due to the yen's depreciation.

Full Story »

High Liner Recalls Captain's Crew Fish Strips for Undeclared Allergen 

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] April 17, 2017

High Liner Foods Inc. is recalling High Liner Captain's Crew brand breaded fish strips and High Liner Captain's Crew brand breaded fish nuggets from the marketplace because they may contain milk which is not declared on the label.

According to the notice submitted to Canadian health authorities, consumers with an allergy to milk should not consume the recalled products.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) is conducting a food safety investigation, which may lead to the recall of other products...

Full Story »

Quinlan Bros. Starts Snow Crab Processing at Rebuilt Plant in Bay de Verde

Quinlan Brothers Ltd. announced on Tuesday that a small quantity of snow crab will be run through the processing line to ensure the plant is ready as boats begin returning to shore with their first landings of the new season later this week. The plant will process only snow crab this season, but the company is preparing to expand into groundfish when stocks allow. Around a year ago the Quinlan Brothers' processing facility burned to the ground, which had widespread implications for Newfoundland's snow crab industry from the people the plant employed to buyers that had lined up snow crab deals for the season.

The Russian Federal Fishery Agency officially announced that it will hold an auction for the distribution of crab quotas in the Far Eastern fishing basin on May 18-19 of the current year. The auctions will allow companies to control crab quota through 2026. The quotas will include all of the major crab species in particular species of king crab, helmet crab, and opilio crab in major crab-producing areas.

A report on raw material prices for Vietnamese shrimp shows prices are up 24 percent since 2016 and are at a two-year high. Lack of domestic shrimp in the market has been attributed to the spike in prices this year. The Vietnamese have stepped up importing shrimp from foreign suppliers like India in order to meet the needs of processors.

We run an opinion from Tom Mazzetta who calls for increased cooperation between domestic and imported seafood operators in the United States. Mazzetta points to the success of the Maine lobster and Alaskan salmon industries as examples of how domestically sourced and imported seafood products can coexist in the US. "We need to come together as an industry to support increased seafood consumption as an overall goal, not only for the benefit of our collective bottom-lines, but for the health benefits of eating more seafood, the environmental benefits of seafood production versus other proteins, and to address regulations that artificially inflate prices for American shoppers and diners," said Mazzetta.

Finally, dire West Coast ocean salmon seasons haven't officially started but are already affecting non-salmon fisheries such as sablefish and Pacific whiting writes Susan Chambers. The Pacific Fishery Management Council approved no summer salmon seasons in parts of Oregon and California and limited seasons on the rest of the coast to protect struggling stocks such as coho in Washington and Klamath fall Chinook and Sacramento winter Chinook in Oregon and California. Sablefish harvesters will get increased trip limits to help avoid salmon conflicts, and the whiting fleet will get a special additional bycatch allocation since moving out of Klamath salmon areas will force them into a higher bycatch zone.

Full Story »

Trident to Sell Newport Surimi Plant to Pacific Seafoods, If Pacific Gains Community Support

Trident Seafoods intends to sell their Newport, Oregon surimi plant to Pacific Seafoods. Trident said it believes Pacific has the best chance of successfully operating the plant because of its existing infrastructure in Newport and experience marketing products produced from Pacific whiting. However, there is an issue that could prevent the deal from happening, and that is the anti-trust lawsuit that has been filed against Pacific by some harvester groups. Pacific Seafood and Trident plan to meet with fishermen, community stakeholders, and government regulators to gauge support for the proposed sale, with hopes of saving the 2017 whiting season. "We wanted to do everything possible to make sure that the people who work at the plant have stable employment and our fishermen continue to have good markets for their catches," said Trident's CEO Joe Bundrant.

The forecasted harvest for Prince William Sound pink salmon this year is the largest on record while the Copper River sockeye harvest was reported at a more modest level according to the latest ADF&FG forecast. If the 2017 natural stock pink salmon forecast is realized it would be the second largest natural run on record, and well above the 1997–2015 odd-year average return. The Alaska salmon seasons have expected start dates between mid-May and mid-June depending on the region and the species.

In other news the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Commission said they want more data before setting the dates for the season. LDWF biologist Jeff Marx said data he’s collected show better conditions than in previous years. But nearly all of the shrimpers at the meeting said they would rather wait for the season to open at the normal time so the shrimp can grow to be larger. The spring shrimp season usually opens in mid to late May.

Meanwhile, Hogne I. Tyssoy, a portfolio manager for major Norwegian seafood investment fund Holberg Triton will accompany Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg's delegation to China this month as the two countries continue to rebuild their trade relations. Tyssoy said he is interested in seeing first hand what growth opportunities are in store for Norwegian fish farmers in China.

Finally, some members of Atlantic Canada's fishing industry are concerned how the United State's implementation of new seafood import rules will impact shipments to the market. As of this week the US is requiring proof that its seafood imports are harvested in a way that minimizes harm to marine mammals. Countries now have to submit a list of fisheries measures in place to limit by-catch and gear entanglements with whales, turtles, porpoises and seals. "I think for everybody this is really concerning," she said. "We have not been privy to the actual ongoing discussions between the Department of Fisheries and Oceans and the U.S. government. What for us is uncomfortable is how these things are being viewed from office buildings," said Melanie Sonneberg of the Grand Manan Fishermen's Association in New Brunswick.

Full Story »

News Summary April 10, 2017

Today's Main Story: Western Rock Lobster Price Falls Due to a Drop in China Demand, Cheaper American Exports

Headlining the nws, the value of premium species of lobster sourced from Western Australia has plummeted, causing the lucrative industry to grind to a near halt. The western rock lobster 'beach price', which is the price professional fishers receive direct from processors, has slumped to about $50 a kilogram. Compared to six months ago, the price has shed about 30 per cent of its value. Almost all the western rock lobsters, caught on the continental shelf mainly from Perth to Geraldton, are exported live to China. A seasonal drop in demand from the Chinese market, along with the strengthening of the Chinese Yuan bearing down on Australia's return in the exchange rate, are major factors behind the price fall. Cheaper lobster from America is also suspected as cause for lower prices. The emergence of America as a key exporter of a more affordable lobster to China is also thought to be contributing to the problem.

Full Story »

Chuitna Coal Suspension Fails to Resolve State Debate Over Mining and Salmon Habitat

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Peninsula Clarion] by Ben Boettger - April 10. 2017

Although a plan to strip-mine coal from beneath the Chuitna River’s west Cook Inlet tributaries is done for the moment, elements of controversy may continue to ricochet.

For opponents, the Chuitna Coal Project’s eleven years of permitting were a weary battle against the dewatering of salmon spawning streams. For proponents such as Alaska Mining Association executive director Deantha Crockett, it was a regulatory and legal “death by a thousand cuts.” After Monday’s announcement that Delaware-based PacRim Coal, the Chuitna project’s parent company, was halting its quest for permits, ...

Full Story »

Vietnam Emerged as Major Market for Indian Shrimp Exports in 2016

At the same time that India has become as major shrimp supplier to the US market, it has also stepped up exports to Vietnam with shipments in some months even surpassing those to the US. Last year Indian shrimp exports to Vietnamese and US markets increased 28 and 29 percent respectively and were the top two markets for Indian shippers. During India’s heavy harvest period last spring India’s shrimp exports to Vietnam were higher than exports to the US. Additionally, by December of last year, Indian shrimp exports to Vietnam and the US were about the same both in terms of volume and as a percentage of India’s overall exported market share. Vietnamese processors continue to report severe raw material shortages from domestic producers and higher dependence on imported materials. This is an indication that Vietnam will continue to buy foreign raw shrimp supplies so it can meet a goal to export $7.5 billion worth of seafood in 2017.

Vietnam loosened it soaking standards on pangasius fillets allowing for an 18 percent increase in moisture content. The new standard now requires only 14 percent of fish protein in treated pangasius fillets. This decision reverses an attempt by the Vietnamese government to cap soaking at 83 percent net weight. But this decree was staunchly opposed by some Vietnamese producers.

In other news, South Korea’s wild pollock population, considered near-extinct since the turn of the millennium, may be making a comeback. The Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries said Thursday that a wild pollock was caught in eastern waters near Uljin, North Gyeongsang Province. Experts blame global warming along with overfishing for the decline of the pollack population in South Korea, which according to data accounted for 14.9 percent of Korea’s entire seafood market in 1942. Currently, approximately 90 percent of pollock consumed in Korea is imported from either Russia or Japan.

Meanwhile, some Chinese shrimp farmers in Guangxi, are restarting production early this season. Currently more than half of the farmers have stocked their seed. Farmers are reporting high success rates in shrimp farming and satisfactory profit margins in the first round of seed stocking from last year. The first round of shrimp supplies are expected to hit the Chinese market this May.

Finally, Alaska's House Fisheries Committee will assess a resolution sponsored by several House Representatives “urging the United States government to continue to work with the government of Canada to investigate the long-term, region-wide downstream effects of proposed and existing industrial development and to develop measures to ensure that state resources are not harmed by upstream development in B.C.” Chris Zimmer, Rivers Without Borders Alaska campaign director, said Alaskans are troubled by B.C.’s lack of enforcement of mining regulations. The problem is that Canadian mining operations that go out of business are not required to clean up their sites. This has created leakage from abandoned mine works and sludge ponds, which have been polluting Alaskan waterways for decades.

Full Story »

Major Fishery and Processor Associations Ask Gov. Inslee's Council Recommendations be Withdrawn

SEAFOODNEWS.COM by John Sackton  April 5, 2017

Four major West coast and Alaska organizations have expressed outrage over Washington Governor Inslee’s nominations for new appointments to the North Pacific Fishery Management Council.

The groups have written to Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, asking that the Washington State nominations be returned and that the Governor be asked to follow the state’s public appointment process.

The four groups, the Pacific Seafood Processors Association, the At-Sea Processors Association, the United Catcher Boats and the Groundfish Forum represent the groundfish fishery in Alaska, which accounts for the largest share of both volume and value of the fisheries managed by the North Pacific Council.

Originally, three people were informed by the Washington Dept. of Fish and Wildlife that they were on the governor’s nomination list...

Full Story »

Newfoundland Snow Crab Quota Set at 35,419 Tons, 22% Less Than Last Year

The Canadian Dept. of Fisheries and Oceans has announced snow crab quotas for the fishing areas around Newfoundland. The overall quota will decrease around 22 percent from last year's quota. The major reduction by volume is in area 3L. The 3K area quota did not get cut significantly while the 3PS the quota was slashed 50 percent. Prior to the release of the quota, industry estimates were that about 33,000 tons would be allowed in Newfoundland. So the DFO numbers are slightly more favorable than expected. The fishery will start on April 6th in most parts of 3L and 3Ps, and April 14th in 3K.

A team of seven respected fisheries scientists, led by Prof. Ray Hilborn, Ph. D., of the University of Washington, found that predator populations are less dependent on specific forage fish species than assumed in previous studies. These findings counter a previous study that argued forage fish are twice as valuable when left in the water to be eaten by predators, and recommended slashing forage fish catch rates by 50 to 80 percent. “Forage fish provide some of the lowest environmental cost food in the world – low carbon footprint, no water use, ” Dr. Hilborn said. “[There are] lots of reasons that forage fish are a really environmentally friendly form of food.”

In other news, by as early as May 1st the free trade deal between the EU and Canada, known as the CETA deal, will come into effect. This means the duty rates for some Canadian seafood exports to the EU market, including live lobster, will drop to zero essentially overnight. Both the US and Canada currently have the same duty rates for live lobster exported to the EU, but this will all change under CETA. This means Canadian producers will get a significant export advantage over Maine's lobster industry. This could put the US in a position where they may have to reduce their lobsters prices to compete with Canadian shippers.

Meanwhile, the pink shrimp season in Washington, Oregon and California officially stated over the weekend on April 1. But this year, many boats are still in port and many haven't even put shrimp nets on their vessels. The few who did test the waters found female shrimp that haven't dropped their eggs yet. Some of the shrimp on the grounds are in the 350-500 size or smaller. Fishermen said they would prefer to have the 250-350 size or larger, as it fetches a better price. They said much of the current global inventory of coldwater shrimp is in the 350-500 size.

Finally, Senators Elizabeth Warren and Ed Markey were asked to support a state-sponsored bill that would allow for the sale, processing and transport of lobster parts in the state of Massachusetts. The bill was co-sponsored by 13th Bristol District Rep. Antonio Cabral and is supported by Seatrade International, New Bedford Mayor Jon Mitchell and Ed Anthes-Washburn, the executive director of the Harbor Development Committee. Proponents of the law say it will create more jobs in the state. The practice is already legal in Maine and New Hampshire.

Full Story »

2017 Louisiana Seafood Cook-Off Will Take Place in Lafayette

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Seafood News] - April 3, 2017

Louisiana Lt. Governor Billy Nungesser recently announced a change in the 2017 Louisiana Seafood Cook-Off: Lafayette, La., will host the event, the first time since its inception that it won't be held in New Orleans.

The event will take place Lafayette on Tuesday, June 20, in conjunction with the Eat Lafayette kick-off. This will be a fantastic opportunity for chefs from across the state to compete before an expected 2,000 attendees for the title “King or Queen of Louisiana Seafood,” organizers said in a statement.

This is the 10th year for the state’s premier ...

Full Story »

With Surge in Pangasius Sales to China, Gov't Cracks Down on Smuggling, Will Require Traceability

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Fishfirst] Translated by Amy Zhong  March 31, 2017

Various problems haunt China’s rising basa fish market. And the government plans to take action against them. With the popularity of basa fish in China, smuggling has become an increasingly serious problem within the past few years. And the government is going to issue relevant policies and regulations against it.

For example, it has released a list of basa fish producers which meet relative standards. So the fish with quality problems will be banned from China’s market.

Meanwhile, it also intends to strengthen its traceability system...

Full Story »

DFO Slashes Inshore Northern Shrimp Quota by 62% in Area 6

SEAFOODNEWS.COM  by John Sackton  March 31, 2017

The Canadian dept of Fisheries and Oceans announced Northern shrimp quotas for the upcoming season, and the news was just as bad as the industry in Newfoundland feared. 

The largest inshore shrimp fishing area, which is the basis for much of the cooked and peeled inshore industry, will have a quota of 10,400 tons. Of this, 2400 tons will be allocated to the offshore fleet, and after some special allocations, 7239 tons will be allocated for the inshore fleet...

Full Story »

FFAW Says Hundreds of Crab Vessels Iced in Will Need Compensation Due to Late Start, As in Past

The Fish, Food and Allied Workers union said that hundreds of snow crab fishing boats are being kept ashore by the ice that has built up around Newfoundland and Labrador. President Keith Sullivan called on the federal government to pay compensation to fish harvesters who are kept away from the fishery. "For many, E.I. benefits run out next week, which will leave families without any income for the foreseeable future, since ice is expected to be a problem until at least mid-May," the FFAW wrote in a statement.

New England regulators will allow lobster fishing in proposed deep-sea coral protection zones on the Mount Desert Rock and Outer Schoodic Ridges. The New England Fishery Management Council voted 14-1 Tuesday to ban most fishing in the canyons and plateaus where slow-growing, cold-water coral gardens flourish in the dark waters of the Gulf of Maine. But pleas from Maine lobster fishermen who say a trap ban in fertile gulf fishing grounds would cost them millions of dollars helped sway an initially resistant council to grant a lobstering exemption. The Council will vote on the exemption at its meeting in June.

In other news, Greenpeace released its annual sustainability rankings of canned tuna products sold in the US market. John Sackton writes how these rankings have almost nothing to do with tuna sustainability. "Instead, like other supermarket rankings undertaken by Greenpeace, the ranking system is used to reward banners that conform to Greenpeace’s ideology and punish banners that don’t," Sackton writes.

Meanwhile, the Gulf Seafood Institute and six other Gulf of Mexico seafood industry organizations endorsed North Pacific Fishery Management Council Executive Director Chris Oliver for the open position of Assistant Administrator for NOAA Fisheries. “It is imperative that NOAA Fisheries be guided by an experienced Administrator with a solid track record of uniting these varying interests with a spirit of positivity and mutual respect,” the groups said in a letter sent to Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross, Jr.

Finally, biologists at NOAA Fisheries’ Southwest Fisheries Science Center cracked the code on how to spawn Pacific sardines in the laboratory, opening a new window on the life cycle of the commercially important species. Some in the industry hope it will better inform industry and managers as to what environmental factors would augment wild reproduction and recruitment.

Full Story »

Scientists Spawn Pacific Sardines In Captivity; Results Could Inform Potential for Good Fishing

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Seafood News] by Susan Chambers - April 20, 2017

Biologists at NOAA Fisheries’ Southwest Fisheries Science Center cracked the code on how to spawn Pacific sardines in the laboratory, opening a new window on the life cycle of the commercially important species. Some in the industry hope it will better inform industry and managers as to what environmental factors would augment wild reproduction and recruitment.

Like many species, sardines require just the right conditions to reproduce. Researchers working with sardines in the SWFSC’s Experimental Aquarium had tried for decades to identify ...

Full Story »

Russia Squeezed by High Salmon Prices as Chilean Companies Cut Back Shipments

SEAFOODNEWS.COM by Eugene Gerden - April 19, 2017

Russia may face a shortage of salmon this year, due to the lack of supplies from Norway and the inability of producers from Faroe Islands, Chile and Iceland to fill the vacant niche.  This was laid out by Ilya Shestakov, head of the Russian Federal Agency of Fisheries (Rosrybolovstvo). 

Despite state hopes, domestic fisherman, as well as salmon producers from South America, were not able to replace more than 500 Norway salmon producers and importers, which were banned from Russia at the beginning of 2015 due to sanctions...

Full Story »

EU Inspecting Mekong Shrimp Exporters for Possible Transshipment of Indian Shrimp Through Vietnam

Vietnam's Ministry of Trade confirmed that EU inspectors examined several shrimp exporters in the Mekong Delta under the suspicion that Indian shrimp is being transshipped to the EU market through Vietnam. Currently, EU import tariffs for Vietnam's shrimp are much lower than those for India. Particularly, the tariff for unprocessed shrimp imports from Vietnam is 4.2 percent, compared to 12 percent for India. For semi-processed shrimp, Vietnam's tariff is about 7 percent while India's is 20 percent. Officials with the EU said they will raise Vietnam's tariff rates for its shrimp shipments if transshipping is detected.

Fortune International has acquired the assets to online seafood distributor Lobster Gram in a deal that expands Fortune's market reach to consumers across the country. “I have always admired Lobster Gram and how [Lobster Gram founder Dan Zawacki] successfully started a live Maine lobster home delivery company from his parents’ garage, now that is entrepreneurship,” said Sean J. O’Scannlain, Fortune International’s President and CEO. “We have always considered entering the e-commerce business given the growth potential and what better way than with an icon like Lobster Gram that shares our commitment to quality service and products.” This is Fortune’s first acquisition of 2017 but just the latest deal that the Bensenville, Illinois-based seafood distributor has made since 2012. Fortune purchased JDY Gourmet in 2012, Chef Martin Old World Butcher Shop Sausage in 2014 and Coastal Seafoods of MN in July of 2016.

The retail market for Bristol Bay sockeye is looking good again this year because of a large push to chill majority of the fish and sell it as a premium product. Last year harvesters set a record volume for the amount of raw material they chilled. "This is huge for the retail potential of Bristol Bay," said Rebecca Martello, the association's executive director. "The fleet is making great strides to ensure Bristol Bay is a quality product and this definitely ties into all aspects of marketing and making Bristol Bay the premium brand we know it to be."

In other news, Chinese tilapia production was flat and the value of its exports fell last year. The industry says its needs to do a better job of developing more international markets to boost sales. In order to do this, producers and processors are being encouraged to increase overseas marketing efforts, develop more competitive brands and increase the quality of the fish.

Finally, the eight percent tariff on Canadian live lobster shipped to Europe will immediately disappear when the free trade deal known as CETA is signed, which could happen as soon as May 1. This coincides with the spring lobster season opener in P.E.I. "For the lobster sector it will mean tariff free access to 27 countries in Europe over the next number of years," said Geoff Irvine, executive director of the Lobster Council of Canada. "[That] will give us, hopefully, an advantage in that market as we compete against other seafood products and other proteins in a market that has 500 million people."

Full Story »

News Summary April 13, 2017

Today's Main Story: Gulf Snow Crab Quota Even Higher Than Expected, Set at Nearly 44,000 Tons

Today’s main story focuses on how the snow crab supply picture from Atlantic Canada is coming into better focus. The Canadian DFO announced that the quota in the Southern Gulf, which was 21,725 tons last year, will more than double to 43,822 tons this year. Combined with the Newfoundland quota of 35,419 tons, total Canadian harvests from the two primary producing areas will total 79,241 tons of crab or nearly 175 million pounds of live crab if the entire quota is caught.

In other news, we post an opinion piece regarding The Coastal Conservation Association of N.C. which (it is written) appears to find much joy in destroying families and livelihoods of North Carolina commercial fishing communities, in which gill nets play a major

Full Story »

PFMC Approves Limited Salmon Seasons; Effects Ripple to Other Fisheries

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Seafood News] by Susan Chambers - April 12, 2017

Sacramento, Calif. -- Dire West Coast ocean salmon seasons haven't officially started but already are affecting non-salmon fisheries such as sablefish and Pacific whiting.

Sablefish harvesters will get increased trip limits to help avoid salmon conflicts, and the whiting fleet will get a special additional bycatch allocation since moving out of Klamath salmon areas will force them into a higher bycatch zone.

The Pacific Fishery Management Council approved Tuesday no summer salmon seasons in parts of Oregon and California and limited seasons on the rest of the coast to protect struggling stocks such as coho in Washington and Klamath fall Chinook and Sacramento winter Chinook in Oregon and California. ...

Full Story »

Icelandic Group Sheds Another Asset With Sale of Belgian Subsidiary Gadus to Steinasalir 

SEAFOODNEWS.COM by Michael Ramsingh - April 11, 2017

Icelandic Group has completed the sale of its Belgian subsidiary, Gadus, to another group of seafood companies based in Iceland.

Steinasalir has acquired the full assets to Gadus’ operations. Steinasalir is owned by established Icelandic seafood companies, including Saemark Seafood, Fishproducts Iceland, and Akur, an Icelandic based private equity fund. The buyers aim to further promote sales and marketing of high quality seafood in Belgium and Central Europe.

Gadus handles and produces about 7.000 metric tons of products annually and employs about 130 people...

Full Story »

Seafood Harvesters of America Opposes Modern Fish Act

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews] - April 10, 2017

Washington, D.C. – A new bill focused on recreational fishing has drawn strong opposition from the nation's largest organization of commercial seafood harvesters.

SHA clams that The Modern Fish Act would hamstring federal regional fishery councils’ ability to manage the fishery sector and most species, while also limiting the ability to innovate new solutions to overfishing...

Full Story »

Vietnam's Pangasius Exports to EU Down Sharply in 2017 as Consumer Demand Continues to Erode

A report by the Vietnam Pangasius Association (VPA) showed that drastic declines in pangasius fish exports to the EU market are still occurring in 2017 with the total value down over 17.5 percent so far this year. Consumer demand for Vietnamese pangasius in the EU is eroding because of attacks on the industry's production methods. A decision by Carrefour Belgium to ban the sale of pangasius at its stores earlier this year sparked a series of very negative news stories that incorrectly said Vietnam's production methods were damaging the environment. NGOs were quick to jump on these stories to further destroy the perception of Vietnamese pangasius among EU consumers. 

Major Indian shrimp exporter Devi Seafoods has attained four-star certification from the Global Aquaculture Alliance’s Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) program. Devi achieved the four-star designation after its shrimp feed mill received BAP certification in its first year of operation. Devi has also opened a second shrimp feed production plant that will boost its annual output to 100,000 tons.“Devi Seafoods has grown steadily over the years by investing in integration and consolidating its position in the industry,” the company said in a press release. “With a fully integrated supply chain, Devi Seafoods has better control over the quality of its produce and is actively working towards sustainability by participating in the ASC and BAP programs.”

In other news, Indian seafood exporters say the EU does not have a good reason for stepping up its inspections of imported shrimp. EU Customs officials are now inspecting 50 percent of all imported shrimp that enters the market from India, which exporters say is a non-tariff barrier. “There is no justifiable reason for increasing the EU import-surveillance norms. Normally, such measures are taken when frequency of rejections is on the rise. However, there are no such reports,” said Norbert Karikkassery, President, Seafood Exporters Association of India (SEAI)

Meanwhile, a massive years-long, undercover operation by the US Department of Justice has led to arrests and guilty pleas of elver poachers and traffickers up and down the East Coast. The guilty pleas over the past six months account for $2.75 million worth of Maine elvers.

Finally, grocer LIDL Italy has joined with LIDL Denmark and LIDL Germany to announce it will work to end transshipment at sea in all its seafood supply chains. This has been a demand of tuna campaigners led by Greenpeace in Europe.“LIDL Italy’s actions on sustainable seafood procurement and transshipment at sea are significant steps in the right direction. We continue to see consumers around the globe demanding more responsibly-caught seafood products, and retailers are answering the call by adding those products to store shelves," said Greenpeace Italy Oceans Campaigner Giorgia Mont.

Have a great weekend.

Full Story »

Major Fishery and Processor Associations Ask Gov. Inslee's Council Recommendations be Withdrawn

Four major West coast and Alaska organizations have expressed outrage over Washington Governor Inslee’s nominations for new appointments to the North Pacific Fishery Management Council. The groups have written to Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, asking that the Washington State nominations be returned and that the Governor be asked to follow the state’s public appointment process. We provide the full letter sent to Secretary Ross in today's story.

The Association of Seafood Producers (ASP) says the Standing Fish Price Setting Panel decision on raw material snow crab prices compounds bad news on quota cuts and places the industry at substantial risk of a market collapse. “The market reports contracted by the province were both clear,” said Derek Butler, Executive Director of ASP. “Consumption is reducing, the price has gotten too high, and it is spot pricing in response to quota reductions in Alaska and here that is being used. That is wrong. It is not the reality of our snow crab industry.”

In other news, the North Korean port of Rajin continues to remain biggest transit hub for illegal sales of Russian crab in Asia-Pacific region. According to the Russian Association of Crab Producers, currently about 500 tons of illegal crab supplies from Russia are delivered to the North Korean seaport and to the Chinese town of Hunchun each month. These figures are growing since the situation is aggravated by extremely low prices for Russian crab the Producers say.

Meanwhile, FDA seafood refusals in March were just about the same compared to last March as mahi, shrimp and filth remain on inspectors' radars. However, federal seafood rejections are well below levels recorded through the first quarter in 2016 because of notable declines in snapper, lobster and tuna refusals.

Finally, Alaskan halibut production during the first month of the season is lower from last year because of inclement weather. Wholesale prices for Pacific halibut are now moving higher with inventories limited ahead of Good Friday. Alaska's halibut got off to a slow start in March because of poor weather, but production picked over the next few weeks. However, another round of bad weather has pinched production ahead of Easter. Traders say they will be closely monitoring Alaskan halibut production and supplies over the next week as demand could go higher in preparation for the last week of the Lenten season.

Full Story »

Alaska Native Corporation Sealaska Buys Majority Stake in Seattle’s Odyssey Enterprises

Sealaska, an Alaska native corporation, has acquired a majority interest in Odyssey Enterprises, a Seattle-based seafood processing company that employs some 250 people. The purchase, which closed Monday, is part of Sealaska’s corporate strategy to expand its presence in the seafood industry. Terry Downes, the chief operating officer for Sealaska said they are interested in even more investments in the seafood industry.

Indian shrimp imports are offsetting notable declines in shipments from other major US suppliers early on in 2017. According to monthly shrimp import volumes US shipments in February dropped over 7 percent, which pushed imports for the year down about 2 percent. Most major shrimp suppliers posted declines in shipments to the US market. However, imports from India and Indonesia are at least partially offsetting import declines. India is the major factor for US supplies right now since its import volumes through the first two months of the year are far higher from historical averages.

In other news, PacRim Coal is suspending all permitting efforts for its proposed Chuitna Coal Project planned for development on the west side of Cook Inlet in Alaska. The Alaska Department of Natural Resources was told about the company's decision late last week. "Following several months of internal review and discussions, the partners in PacRim Coal, LP have decided to suspend pursuit of permitting efforts on the Chuitna Coal Project," PacRim Coal said in a statement.

Meanwhile, politicians in Newfoundland said they will try to work with seafood industry participants that are expected to take an economic blow because of major cuts to the region's shrimp and snow crab quotas for the upcoming seasons. “This is devastating news for the industry — both the harvesting and processing sectors,” NDP Leader Earle Mccurdy said. “The issue of that magnitude should be above partisan squabbling and we should be trying to work together to make the best of a real tough situation.”

Finally, native tribes along the Columbia River are benefitting from high salmon demand market prices from around the world. Over the past 10 years, prices for Columbia River salmon have roughly quadrupled, and the fish has found more market penetration to white tablecloth restaurants across the country. The higher prices paid for the Native catch have rippling economic benefits for indigenous communities.

Full Story »

Hilborn Study Redefines Forage Fish and Predator Relationships; Suggests Fishing Pressure Lesser Factor

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SeafoodNews]  April 3, 2017

New research published today in the journal Fisheries Research finds that fishing of forage species likely has a lower impact on predators than previously thought, challenging previous studies that argued forage fish are more valuable left in the ocean.

In 2012 a Lenfest study got wide play claiming that models showed fishing pressure on prey species had big impacts on the abundance of predator species, such as cod and tuna.  However, some of the authors of the original model have now joined with other researchers to say it is out of date.

A team of seven respected fisheries scientists, led by Prof. Ray Hilborn, Ph. D., of the University of Washington, found that predator populations are less dependent on specific forage fish species than assumed...

Full Story »

Carlos Rafael Pleads Guilty; Up to 13 New Bedford Vessels Could be Seized by Government

Carlos Rafael, owner of one of the largest fishing fleets in New England, pled guilty in Federal District Court in Boston yesterday to 27 counts lodged against him by the Dept. of Justice for fishery fraud, conspiracy and cash smuggling. Most of the charges have sentences of up to 5 years in prison with 2 of the offenses having penalties of up to 20 years. But there is also a forfeiture clause. For the mislabeling and false reporting charges, the US attorney says that on conviction of one or more of the false reporting offenses, the vessels and permits are to be forfeited. These vessels represent the majority of the active vessels fishing for Carlos Rafael in New Bedford. The fate of the vessels and especially the fishing permits is of great concern in New Bedford.

The Canadian Department of Fisheries and Oceans announced Northern shrimp quotas for the upcoming season, and the news was just as bad as the industry in Newfoundland feared. The quota for Area 6 was slashed 62 percent. Area six is the largest inshore shrimp fishing area in Newfoundland and the basis for much of the cooked and peeled inshore industry. The Association of Seafood Producers (ASP) said the federal cuts to shrimp quotas for the inshore fleet will have a devastating impact on the industry, including all shrimp plants.

In other news, monthly shrimp landings from the Gulf of Mexico in February were down from last month and from the same time last year. Traders say they are anxiously waiting new season production with inventories low and market prices high. Spring season shrimp fishing is at least a month and a half away, and contingent on the size of the shrimp in the waters.

Meanwhile, Market demand for Vietnamese pangasius in China over the last couple of years is up and now officials say they will issue a list of approved suppliers and ban imports of fish with quality problems. The Chinese also plan to strengthen pangasius traceability.

Finally, President Trump signed two executive orders aimed at combating foreign trade abuses. The Commerce Department and US trade representative will compile a thorough accounting of the US's trade deficits with its top trading partners within 90 days. The American Shrimp Processors Association supported the executive orders. This week American shrimp producers scored a victory in International Trade Court when they won reconsideration of shrimp anti-dumping duties on Vietnamese exports by highlighting labor abuse.

Full Story »

Carlos Rafael Pleads Guilty; Up to 13 New Bedford Vessels Could be Seized by Government

SEAFOODNEWS.COM by John Sackton March 31, 2017

Carlos Rafael, owner of one of the largest fishing fleets in New England, pled guilty in Federal District Court in Boston yesterday to 27 counts lodged against him by the Dept. of Justice.

The case against Rafael developed after he indicated interest in selling his fishing business.  Two FBI agents, speaking Russian and posing as Russian buyers, indicated interest in his business.  When he attempted to justify a price that was much higher than his financial reports would indicate...

Full Story »