Ship's Blog - Fishermen's Finest

Excerpts from today's SeafoodNew.com article by Peggy Parker & John Sackton 

Chris Woodley, Executive Director of the Groundfish Forum, a trade association of five flatfish trawl companies under Amendment 80, says everyone understands the importance of reducing bycatch, and says the Amendment 80 fleet has already been successful in reducing bycatch.  These reductions are reflected in IPHC and council data.   

“The concern we have,” Woodley says, “is that using the blunt tool of reallocation may not only not solve the problem, it could make it worse. A 50% reduction would shift the focus and make it ten times larger.  

“I think the biggest problem is the time crunch. There’s a large push to get this resolved in June. i think there’s probably some good ideas that have not come to the surface yes, as the Council is focused on the reallocation issue. 

Woodley says there’s a saying in the Coast Guard, his former employer: “If you want it bad, you get it bad,” saying there are potential tools like abundance based caps that have not been fully explored. 

“The other big thing for us is the Amendment 80 fleet employs some 2,000 people who work on our boats, they and their families are dependent on fishing jobs. 

“A 50% cut  would mean we would tie up our boats in June,” Woodley said. 

“Our efficiency on halibut  is .6%,” says Woodley. “Our target species is 99.4% of the catch.”

“The last thing I want people to know is how our cargo is handled. All our cargo goes to Dutch Harbor and is hauled away in containers or tramp vessels. It takes stevedores, tugs, marine pilots, millions of dollars and hundreds of people to get that cargo to its destination. We spent $45 million in fuel in Alaska last year.”

 

Fishermen's Finest is pleased to once again be part of the Seattle Maritime Festival's Career Fair today at the Georgetown Campus of the South Seattle Community College.

Read more about the Festival:  Maritime 101

See our previous posts on this valuable service the Propeller Club and Maritime Industry provide to educate the Seattle community of the career opportunities in the Fishing Industry and other maritime sectors.

Fishermen's Finest ~ a team of excellence ~ our name says it all. 

We are thankful for the support of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union as the 223rd Plenary Meeting of the North Pacific Fishery Management Council nears - June / Sitka.  The halibut issue (Agenda item C-2) is up for Final Action - read more - IPHC Halibut History 

Fishermen's Finest, and ILWU - a team of excellence - our name says it all.  

 

We believe safety isn't an accident - you have to work proactively to maintain a safe workplace and to train a safe workforce.  That is why we encourage our crew to better themselves by attending safety courses offered through organazations such as

Not only do we encourage our crew, we step up to the plate and pay for our crew to attend.  Further, a more trained crewmember will move up in the pay scale aboard the vessels.  It's a win-win-win.

Listed below are just a few of the safety training opportunities that are out there:

Each Spring we offload our trips of primarily Yellowfin Sole in Togiak.  Located in the upper Bristol Bay region, Togiak is a city in the Dillingham census area - see NOAA Chart 16315* below for more detail

 

Thanks to Gladys Coopchiak (Coopchiak Aviation) and Paul Markoff for taking good care of us each year - we couldn't do this without you and we appreciate all you do for us.

We also thank North Pacific Fuel (Petrostar) and Crowley for remotely fueling the vessels while we operate in this region.

Togiak is in the Dillingham Census area, home of Bristol Bay Economic Development Corporation (BBEDC), a native regional association that we've had a long relationship with - read more on BBEDC 

Fishermen's Finest, a team of excellence - our name says it all. 

As we near the 223rd Plenary Session of the North Pacific Fishery Management (NPFMC) meeting in June/Sitka, we have been pleased to see the outpouring of support for the Amendment 80 fleet with respect to the Halibut Bycatch Reductions that are up for Final Action (Agenda item C-2).

We recognize Unalaska Mayor Shirley Marquardt and Fisheries/Natural Resources Analyst Frank Kelty for their support; Dutch Harbor is our primary port of operations throughout the year.

The North Pacific Fishery Management Council released their Draft Schedule for the upcoming June Sitka Council Meeting 

 

Of particular interest for us is now Agenda Item C-2, Halibut PSC (prohibited spp. catch).  For more information, please read:

Fishermen's Finest ~ a team of excellence ~ our name says it all. 

Dorene Lorenz of Fox 4 News KTBY in Anchorage interviewed our Fishermen's Finest of Alaska President, Mike Szymanski at the 222nd Plenary North Pacific Fishery Management Council (NMPFC) meeting earlier this month.  See the full interview here:

Mike Szymanski / Dorene Lorenz - Part 1

Mike Szymansk / Dorene Lorenz - Part 2

Of utmost importance, and the primary reason for this interview, other than touching base with former Alaska Senator Syzmanski was to discuss the impending Halibut Bycatch issue that is facing our Company at the 223rd Plenary Sesssion of the NPFMC in June/Sitka ~ Read More Here

Thank you to YourAlaskaLink.Com for bringing this footage to us and to Dorene Lorenz - Fishermen's Finest ~ a team of excellence ~ our name says it all.