Today's Main Story: Copper River Catch Approaches 200,000 Salmon, Prince William Sound Opened Yesterday
The ADF&G reported Copper River landings at 186,600 sockeyes and 6,800 chinook. Those totals are ten percent and about 17 percent of the preseason forecast for sockeye and chinook. The average weights of the fish were 4.9 pounds for reds, 16.1 pounds for kings and 6.5 pounds for chums. Yesterday the Copper River district began a 36-hour opener at 7 a.m. Escapements for both sockeye and chinook are above pre-season forecasts.
Seattle’s Great Pacific Seafoods officially filed for bankruptcy this past Sunday after reports on Friday confirmed the operator had shuttered all of its operations in Alaska. Great Pacific’s secured and unsecured creditor claims are approximately equal to its total assets. Additionally, the company's sales and revenues declined between 2014 and 2015. This hurt the company's ability to get the working capital it needed to start processing for the season.
Vietnam's top shrimp producer and exporter Minh Phu has a plan to reach $1 billion in sales to overseas markets in the next five years despite production issues plaguing the region's key producing regions. The company has a plan to reduce its use of antibiotics and implement low-density farming and crop rotation strategies to maximize its output. Vietnamese producers are currently battling extreme drought and salinity issues in the Mekong Delta. Meanwhile, exporters are reporting a crackdown on shipments to major markets because of illegal antibiotic residues.
We run a letter from Acy J. Cooper Jr. President of the Lousiana Shrimp Association. Cooper is critical of a letter we published last week by Tom Mazzetta that supported stiffer bycatch regulations on Louisiana's shrimp skimmers. Cooper said Mazzetta failed to point out the domestic industry's cooperation with NOAA to reduce bycatch and improve responsible fishery management practices.
Finally, a delegation of Congressional lawmakers sent a letter to the House Leadership asking that the chamber not take up a Senate-approved Resolution to kill the USDA's catfish inspection program. “We believe that the Senate’s action to nullify the catfish inspection program shortly after the program has been implemented is irresponsible and disregards overwhelming evidence proving that imported catfish represents a significant food safety threat to U.S. consumers,” the letter said.
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