A 40-Year Perspective on Kodiak's Trawl Industry From Al Burch (Opinion)
SEAFOODNEWS.COM [OPINION] By Al Burch - July 11, 2016
A pioneer in Alaska’s fishing industry, Al Burch helped develop the groundfish industry in the Gulf of Alaska. Al also helped found the Alaska Fisheries Development Foundation, which set up the infrastructure for pollock and other groundfish processing in the state. He has served on numerous national and international fishing boards, including a 30-year career on the Advisory Panel of the North Pacific Fishery Management Council, and was the executive director of the current Alaska Whitefish Trawlers Association for nearly 40 years. In 2009, Al was inducted into the United Fishermen of Alaska’s Seafood Hall of Fame.
Something remarkable happened in my home town of Kodiak recently.
Roughly 1,000 people turned out to celebrate our groundfish trawl fishery. It was a family affair, with processing workers and their kids, fishing families, support businesses, and local officials all participating in the parade and the barbeque picnic that followed. Over 2,000 meals were served, and $17,000 was raised for the local Brother Francis Shelter.
For me this was very special. My brother and I were some of the pioneers of the trawl fishery here in Kodiak. We started from scratch when...
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