Alaska seafood industry continues to fuel state economy

The state's seafood industry remains a critical economic driver.

Last year, Alaska fishermen landed 5.6 billion pounds of seafood worth a total ex-vessel value of $1.67 billion (€1.4 billion).

Processors produced 2.7 billion pounds of Alaska seafood products worth a first wholesale value of $4.2 billion (€3.6 billion), according to the Economic Value of Alaska’s Seafood Industry report released by the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute (ASMI).

The report is prepared by McDowell Group for ASMI.

Fisheries

The $1.6 billion (€1.4 billion) harvest value is 7 percent lower than 2015 and the 2016 first wholesale value of $4.2 billion (€3.6 billion) is 2 percent less than the year prior.

The top ports based by first wholesale value are:

  • Dutch Harbor $474 million (€402.9 million)
  • Naknek $292 million (€248.2 million)
  • Kodiak $262 million (€222.7 million)
  • Cordova $134 million (€113.9 million)
  • Sitka $121 million (€102.8 million)

There were 6,548 resident-owned fishing vessels participating in the 2016 fishery.

Here's a look at the value and volume of the top species:

Pollock

  • $448 (€380.8) million ex-vessel value, 27 percent of total ex-vessel value landed
  • 3.31 billion harvested, 57 percent of total volume landed
  • $1.41 billion (€1.2 billion) first wholesale value
  • $0.43 (€0.37) per pound first wholesale value

    Salmon

    • $418 million (€355.3 million) ex-vessel value, 25 percent of total ex-vessel value landed
    • 792 million harvested, 14 percent of total volume landed
    • $1.36 billion (€1.2 billion) first wholesale value
    • $1.72 (€1.5) per pound first wholesale value

    Crab

    • $249 million (€211.6 million) ex-vessel value, 15 percent of total ex-vessel value landed
    • 83 million harvested, 1 percent of total volume landed
    • $370 million (€314.5 million) first wholesale value
    • $4.46 (€3.8) per pound first wholesale value

    Cod

    • $178 million (€151.3 million) ex-vessel value, 11 percent of total ex-vessel value landed
    • 702 million harvested, 12 percent of total volume landed
    • $473 million (€402.1 million) first wholesale value
    • $0.67 (€0.57) per pound first wholesale value

    Processing

    Seafood processing accounts for 72 percent of the state’s manufacturing employment, and nonresidents comprise about 70 percent of the workforce. Processing yielded $4.2 billion (€3.6 billion) in wholesale value with 2.7 billion pounds of seafood produced. There were 24,863 processing workers.

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    Value added by processors last year was $2.5 billion (€2.1 billion). The 169 shoreside plants generated $2.6 million (€2.2 million) in first wholesale value, while catcher-processors generated $1.3 billion (€1.1 billion) and floating processors $323 million (€274.6 million).

    First wholesale value by species for 2015-16 breaks down as follows:

    • Pollock 33 percent
    • Salmon 33 percent
    • Cod 11 percent
    • Halibut and black cod 5 percent
    • Crab 9 percent
    • A80 species, including flatfish, rockfish, Atka mackerel 8 percent
    Economic impact
    Salmon provides the "greatest economic impact (jobs, income, and total value) among all species in the Alaska seafood industry," according to the report. Alaska pollock, the largest single-species US fishery by volume, is a close second.
    Meanwhile, High value species such as halibut, black cod and crab account for 2 percent of harvest volume but 19 percent of the labor income and economic output (including multiplier effects) produced by the Alaska seafood industry.
    c28e4bfa6a8c97c80540fa4d8db3bc8f  Photo: ASMI
    c929d995f09cc7d6eebe1f3adb600263  Photo: ASMI

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