Ship's Blog - Fishermen's Finest

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.

Seafood Entrepreneur: The Korean woman company founder who pushed for Americanization of Alaskan groundfish fishery
by Jeanine Stewart Undercurrent News August 20, 2015

Late one night on the remote island of Unalaska, the site of Alaska’s tiny groundfish processing town Dutch Harbor, Korean-born Fishermen’s Finest founder and CEO Helena Park went from fisherman’s wheelhouse to fisherman’s wheelhouse, knocking on doors to gauge interest in a new business plan.

"My ultimate goal was to have a catcher processor," Park told Undercurrent News, referring to her desire to go in on a vessel purchase with a fishermen two years into her career in the Alaska groundfish industry. "But I didn't have the boat, so in the interim, I got to know these fishermen."

Fishermen's Finest lives by the adage, "Good people are the key to our Success"

Each year, we take time to recognize the men and women of Fishermen's Finest that have poured their hearts and soles into Our Company to make this all possible.  While we had the crew of the American No.1 gathered in beautiful Kodiak recently, we took the opportunity to hand out the following awards to our 5 10 & 20 year crew.  

Let's start with Mr. Carlos Desucre, our foreman on the American No.1 who has worked for us since June of 1995.  Pictured below, center, smiling and waving, Carlos is truly Fishermen's Finest - he's a natural leader, hard worker, and a fine person.  We are proud to honor him for 20 years of service and hope he enjoys his new Rolex Submariner watch.


Alex, Adam, Luis, Carlos - 20 YEARS, Ellex, Carlos, Phil, & Ross - American No.1's finest.

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:

Fishermen's Finest lives by the adage, "People are the key to our Success"

Each year, we take time to recognize the men and women of Fishermen's Finest that have poured their hearts and soles into Our Company to make this all possible.  While we had the crew of the US Intrepid gathered together recently, we took the opportunity to hand out the following awards to our 5 and 10 year crew.  

Fishermen's Finest hosted a group of teens and their mentors from the Service Board today at our Kirkland Headquarters.  It was a great opportunity to discuss the North Pacific fishing industry and career opporutnities as well as our new vessel (pictured) America's Finest (currently under construction at Dakota Creek Industries in Anacortes). 

The mission of the Service Board is to mentor teens to conquer personal and cultural challenges through public service and outdoor adventure.  The Service Board instills in High School aged youth a deep sense of life purpose based on an ethic of public service and conviction in their abilities to shape the future.

Joerene and Pacifico will be joining the Fishermen's Finest team this summer as interns ~ we look forward to giving them a more in depth look at a progressive fishing company and hope to inspire future 'Fishermen's Finest-like-thinking' employees for whatever career they ultimately choose.  

For more information, please visit:  TheServiceBoard.Org 

Fishermen's Finest - a team of excellence (working together with the Service Board to help our youth) - our name says it all. 

Talking trash

By Jessica Hathaway

Call them discards. Call it bycatch. Whatever you call it, it’s possibly the dirtiest little secret in fishery management. Yes, management. Discards are a signpost of a mismanaged fishery.

Of course the best solution is to not have any bycatch. But what we do about bycatch in the meantime is what separates our system (as one of the best-managed fishing nations in the world) from Fishery Management 101: So You Wanna Be a First World Country?

 

Enforcing discards and shutting down fisheries at certain thresholds is for management greenhorns. Throwing away fish is no way to sustain fish. Shutting down fishing is no way to sustain a fishery. These are things you do in a moment of crisis, not as a matter of course.

Right now our federal managers want us to focus on observer coverage. There’s a lot of money to be spent on that. And what is the point? To get someone to keep close track of what’s going on aboard fishing boats. I guarantee you the captain knows. And many of them would be willing to contribute to data gathering as long as managers are making an effort to work with them. Threatening someone’s livelihood is not the best way to secure their cooperation.

They will also tell you how much of a waste it is to discard bycatch. And most fishermen will tell you their opinion on what gear type is really ruining things for everyone (and there’s no consensus on that topic). But I sincerely hope you don’t fall into that trap. Divided we fall. If you think no one will go after your gear, just wait.

Meanwhile, we have options for bycatch: allow boats to donate it to SeaShare or school lunch programs. That way we can actually track it. Observers need not apply. Simply make the accounting program anonymous. See where that gets you.

Then spend the money you are scrounging up for observer coverage and put it directly into gear research. Every single fishery could actually use that. Most of the significant marine science tools come from military projects — federally funded — and are adapted over time to be used by fishermen. Why can’t we put a fraction of that cost toward fishing-specific gear research? We talk a really good game about sustainable fishing. But the best way to be sustainable is to be selective, and we commit few resources to improving selectivity. Instead, our system says repeatedly, “Hey fishermen, can you just not fish for the stuff you can’t land?” That’s not helpful, and it’s not working.

We can solve bycatch problems with the right gear set the right way at the right time. But in most cases, we will need to work with fishermen to get the details just so. So what do you say, NOAA and NMFS? Can you work with us?