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The United Cook Inlet Drift Association (UCIDA) was incorporated in 1980 to represent the 570 drift gillnet salmon fishing permit holders in Alaska’s Cook Inlet. UCIDA’s purpose is to enhance and perpetuate the interests of this valuable commercial salmon fishing industry.

Wild Alaskan salmon have been commercially harvested in Cook Inlet since 1882. Over the past twenty years, the drift gillnet fishing fleet has harvested more than 271 million pounds of salmon, primarily sockeye salmon. The combined efforts of the drift and set gillnet fisheries in Upper Cook Inlet have produced average annual harvests of over 23 million pounds of wild salmon for the American and world markets during the past twenty years. Five percent of the world’s supply of sockeye salmon comes from Cook Inlet.

UCIDA’s Board of Directors and staff work to promote responsible management to ensure the long-term health of this abundant salmon resource and the resulting opportunities and benefits it provides. The day-to-day work of UCIDA covers an extremely broad range of issues that ultimately affect salmon, their harvest and marketing. These may include fishery management, invasive species, oil and gas lease sales, navigation issues, endangered species acts, oil spill response, local, state and federal regulatory issues and both state and federal litigation.

The nine members of the Board of Directors serve staggered three-year terms. Elections are held at annual membership meetings. Members (Upper Cook Inlet drift gillnet permit holders) and Associate Members are encouraged to attend all Board meetings.



Office Manager – Audrey Salmon – info@ucida.org

Board of Directors

David MartinPresidentF/V Kaguyak
Erik Huebsch1st VPF/V Williwaw
Ian Pitzman2nd VPF/V Stephanie Anne
Dino SutherlandSec/TreasF/V Rivers End
Ilia KuzminDirectorF/V Currency
John McCombsDirectorF/V Rayo Verde
Dan AndersonDirectorF/V Paragon
Steve TvenstrupDirectorF/V Alaskan Lady
Dyer VanDevereDirectorF/V Swift Arrow


43961 K-Beach Road, Suite E
Soldotna, Alaska
(907) 260-9436

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Fish Bone Broth is Latest Product to Capitalize on Alaskan Fish Byproducts (Fish Radio)

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Fish Radio with Laine Welch] August 29, 2016

This is Fish Radio. I’m Stephanie Mangini. Turning fish bones into broth. Another booming byproduct after this –

Take the UFA Salmon Survey and share what you know about your local fisheries. Find it at United Fishermen of Alaska’s home page and help guide the SHIP.

Want great seafood recipes, from fast and easy to gourmet feasts? Find hundreds of heart healthy recipes from the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute at www.alaskaseafood.org.

Fish by-products are rapidly growing in popularity. Broths made from bones and other fish parts are becoming all the rage for health enthusiasts all over the globe. Bone broths are loaded with vital nutrients like calcium, iodine, and minerals. It has also been found to help support thyroid health, and its natural electrolytes boost muscle repair post workout. But its top ingredient is its bone building collagen.

“Gelatin is good for your skin, and your hair, and your bones. Some people claim that it restores gut health. It is a nutrient dense food that isn’t common in the standard American diet anymore.”

Randy Hartnell is founder and president of Vital Choice. His web based seafood company is broadening the appeal of fish bone broth beyond Alaska. He says that the stock was common in our ancestral diet and is coming back due to new diet trends.

“It’s sort of following the Paleo nutrition rage. Paleo has really been growing over the last two to three years. This year we have seen many bone broth companies, but not many fish broth companies; it’s not so common yet so we are pleased to be able to offer it our customers.”

A handful of Alaska companies are already on the fish broth bandwagon. Rich Clarke owner of Alaska Black Cod makes his stock out of leftover sable fish carcasses. He has considered selling his fish bones at the farmers markets for people wanting to make their own broth at home. Ed’s Kasilof Seafoods halibut bone broth was a Beyond the Plate entry at A.F.D.F’s Symphony of Seafoods last year. And Alaska Broth Co. Founder David Chessik hopes that one day his blend will be known as Alaska’s Coffee. Hartnell points out another benefit to the fish bone broth’s growing popularity - the reduction of fish waste each year.

“The bones, carcasses, and skins forever have just been discarded. This is a way to take and use some of those by products in a really great way that creates something that is so unique, so healthy from sustainable fish from Alaska which is valuable. That is another good aspect of this product.”

Find these links and more at www.alaskafishradio.com

Fish Radio is also brought to you by Ocean Beauty Seafoods, an Alaska corporation proudly supporting Alaska’s coastal communities and the Alaskans who depend on fishing for their livelihoods and culture. www.oceanbeauty.com

In Kodiak, I’m Stephanie Mangini.

Michael Ramsingh
SeafoodNews.com 1-732-240-5330
Editorial Email: Editor@seafood.com
Reporter's Email: michaelramsingh@seafood.com

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A Crash Course on How to Toss Halibut at Seattle's Pike Place Fish Market

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [The New York Times] By Kirk Johnson - August 29, 2016

SEATTLE — The catch of the day has a couple of meanings to Mike Kirn, who works at Pike Place Fish Market. If you’re talking fork, plate and a nice dill sauce, he puts his money on white king salmon. But when he is trying to catch one in midair, with hundreds of people clustered around to watch — not an unusual amount on a touristy afternoon — halibut, Mr. Kirn says, is the fish without equal.

Sure, salmon are sleeker and more beautiful — and they are the money fish at Pike Place, clocking in at $46 or more per pound. They glisten like princelings as they go up and up, hurled 20 feet or more, and then down into the waiting, surprisingly gentle hands of a fishmonger. But the ungainly and lumbering flat-bodied halibut is the real glamour-puss of the market when it takes off to fly.

“It’s like a big floppy Frisbee,” Mr. Kirn said. “The crowd loves to see a halibut.”

Fishmongers have been throwing fish for decades in this small shop just off Seattle’s downtown waterfront at Pike Place Market. And for a long time, they have allowed amateurs to try their luck at catching, too. (Vanna White, from TV’s “Wheel of Fortune,” tried a few times, with eventual success.) The practice, and the philosophy of free-form fun that came with it, evolved partly through desperation after a failed expansion in the mid-1980s, the shop’s owner, John Yokoyama, wrote in 2004 in a book called “When Fish Fly.”

“The only way I was going to go for being world famous was if it didn’t cost me any money,” Mr. Yokoyama wrote, with his co-author Joseph A. Michelli.

For first-timers, here’s the drill: You stand sideways to the fish’s flight path, then think of a football, or perhaps a baby — one hand held low, the other high, ready to support the head as the fish comes down. Then you hope for the best.

New employees said that the learning curve is steep. Fish fly at you from the first day on the job. There are no corporate retreats, no training sessions out of the public eye.

“You stand back here and they throw a big fish and you say, ‘Time out, I don’t want to catch this fish,’ but you’ve just got to do it,” said Ryan Hébert (pronounced AY-bear), 36, who has worked just more than a year with the company. “And the more you do it, the more and more you learn,” he added.

Mr. Kirn, 33, said the secret of flight is that while the crowd roars at a good catch, especially the casual-looking but risky one-hander, the real skill is in the throwing, which hardly anyone notices at all.

“It’s like a golf swing, you keep your right arm straight,” said C.J. Conrad, 27, describing the perfect form for tossing. “Then you use your hips.”

A well-thrown fish does a little mid-body flop halfway to its target, then flattens out into an aerodynamic glide, horizontal but with the head slightly up. If all goes well, the final moments are more like a landing than a catch. Sliminess is irrelevant.

Except when it isn’t.

“I picked it up so fast, people didn’t even know,” said Zach Swingle, 27, describing a recent miss.

They also keep a “practice fish” behind the counter, which gets tossed around for fun, or when business is slow. At day’s end, a fish that has been thrown too many times looks exactly as you would expect: beaten up by the experience. This fish is then donated to the zoo, where the bears have it for dinner.

Jocelyn Garcia Rojas
Urner Barry 1-732-240-5330 ext 214
Editorial Email: Editor@seafood.com
Reporter's Email: jgarciarojas@urnerbarry.com

Copyright © 2016 Seafoodnews.com
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Letters: Why Does President Obama Want to Eliminate Sustainable Commercial Fisheries?

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Letters] August 29, 2016

Dear Seafood News Editor,

“Help us identify Champions who are helping the ongoing recovery of America’s fishing industry and fishing communities,” Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker and Council of Environmental Quality Director Christy Goldfuss posted on the White House Blog on August 10. They were appealing for nominees for this year’s White House Champion of Change for Sustainable Seafood.”

The blogpost had many complimentary things to say about our U.S. commercial fisheries:

“America’s fishers, and our seafood industry, have fed Americans and their families since our nation’s beginning. What’s more, this industry remains critical to the economic health and well-being of communities across the country.

“After decades of decline, we are witnessing the economic and ecological recovery of America’s fishing industry. Overfishing has hit an all-time low, and many stocks are returning to sustainable levels. The U.S. fishing industry contributed nearly $200 billion annually to the American economy in 2014 and supports 1.7 million jobs.

“This shift did not come easy. It took hard work, collaboration, and sacrifice by many across the country. Although there’s still more to do, America’s fisherman have led the way to the United States becoming a global leader in sustainable seafood management.

“This turnaround is a story about innovative ways to catch fish and other seafood sustainably, and connect fishers with their customers. It is a story about the value of science and management working together, and a willingness to make sacrifices today for a better tomorrow. And it is a story about sustaining a proud livelihood that is the backbone of so many coastal communities nationwide.

“President Obama and his Administration want to honor America’s fishers and our coastal communities for their efforts.”

We agree with everything Secretary Pritzker and Director Golfuss said.

Yet on Friday, August 26, President Obama announced he was expanding the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument off the coast of Hawaii, creating the world’s largest marine protected area. The fact sheet stated: “Building on the United States’ global leadership in marine conservation, today’s designation will more than quadruple the size of the existing marine monument, permanently protecting pristine coral reefs, deep sea marine habitats, and important ecological resources in the waters of the Northwest Hawaiian Islands.”

But President Obama’s executive order, authorized under the Antiquities Act, also prohibited commercial fishing in an area increased by 442,781 square miles, bringing the total protected area of the expanded monument to 582,578 square miles. This unilateral action happened without the transparency, science-based decision-making and robust public process trumpeted in the President’s own National Ocean Policy, nor the bipartisan Congressionally mandated Magnuson Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA), which requires fisheries to be managed under a transparent, science-based process administered by regional fishery management councils.

The announcement precipitated extreme disappointment from commercial fishermen and Council members alike, who decried the lack of science and economic pain inflicted on sustainable fisheries and fishing communities. "Closing 60 percent of Hawaii's waters to commercial fishing, when science is telling us that it will not lead to more productive local fisheries, makes no sense," said Edwin Ebiusi Jr., chair of the Western Pacific Fishery Management Council. "Today is a sad day in the history of Hawaii's fisheries and a negative blow to our local food security."

"It serves a political legacy rather than any conservation benefits …” said Council Executive Director Kitty Simonds. “The campaign to expand the monument was organized by a multibillion dollar, agenda-driven environmental organization… The President obviously chose not to balance the interests of Hawaii's community, which has been divided on this issue," she added. Fisheries are the state's top food producer, according the Hawaii Department of Agriculture.

“Our party’s over,” wrote Sean Martin, president of the Hawaii Longline Association, but the monument lobbying effort continues on the east coast and off California, where well-heeled environmental advocates are lobbying to close productive sea mounts in New England, as well as most of the offshore seamounts, banks and ridges off the California coast, all of which are critically important to the long-term sustainability of commercial fisheries in those regions.

On both the east and west coast, fishermen, allied seafood companies and business interests as well as the regional fishery management councils have mounted vigorous opposition to the use of unilateral executive order under the Antiquities Act to manage fisheries. They point to existing National Ocean Policy promises and the Magnuson Act, which require science-based decision-making and robust stakeholder involvement. A transparent process that includes scientific and economic analysis and public involvement already exists through the MSA and fishery management councils. Why not use it?

This Administration’s disrespect for Congressional mandate and its own ocean policies begs the question: Why does this President want to curtail sustainable fisheries?

D.B. Pleschner
Executive Director
California Wetfish Producers Association

Michael Ramsingh
SeafoodNews.com 1-732-240-5330
Editorial Email: Editor@seafood.com
Reporter's Email: michaelramsingh@seafood.com

Copyright © 2016 Seafoodnews.com

D.B. Pleschner is executive director of the California Wetfish Producers Association, a nonprofit dedicated to research and to promote sustainable Wetfish resources. More info at www.californiawetfish.org
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Kodiak Rep. Stutes Asks Governor To Declare Pink Season a Disaster

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Alaska Dispatch News] by Laine Welch - August 29, 2016

Two measures of relief for Alaska's pink salmon industry, reeling from the lowest harvest since the late 1970s, are being sought.

Rep. Louise Stutes, R-Kodiak, last week asked the Walker administration to declare the pink salmon season a disaster, which would open up access to federal relief funds.

Pinks are Alaska's highest volume salmon fishery, though the price tends to be the lowest. Hundreds of fishermen depend on pinks to boost their overall catches and paychecks.

So far, the statewide harvest is just 36 million humpies, far less than a preseason forecast of 90 million. Last summer, 190 million pinks were caught. For pinks, every other year is typically a strong year, with a weak year in between.

"This is the worst salmon year in nearly 40 years, and that's huge," she said. "It doesn't just affect the fishermen — it's a trickle-down effect on the cannery workers, the processors and nearly all businesses in the community. It's a disaster, there's no other way to describe it."

Until this season, the worst pink harvest this century is the 68,035 taken in 2012.

Stutes, who chairs the House Fisheries Committee, said she's gotten a positive response from the state Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development.

"They are on it and already moving forward," Stutes said.

At the same time, she is working with the Division of Investments to allow a "blanket pardon" of state-funded fishermen's loan payments for this year.

"This would not be a forgiveness, but would add this year's payment onto the end of the loan period and forgive the loan payment just for this year," she explained.

The disaster declaration and the loan suspensions "go hand in hand," Stutes said, "but don't depend on each other."

After visiting constituents in Kodiak, Cordova and Yakutat, Stutes said "people are in fear about making mortgage payments and paying their bills. They can't claim unemployment because they are still employed. There is just no work."

Weak king salmon returns on the Yukon River in 2008 and 2009 led to disaster declarations.

By week's end, she was hoping to hear back from Lt. Gov. Byron Mallott, who's closely involved with fisheries issues.

"I'm a squeaky wheel and this is crucial to the resident workers and to people in so many communities."

Crab orgins

National surveys show most Americans want to know the origins of their food. At retail counters, seafood lovers can tell the origin of salmon and other fish — and whether it's wild or farmed. That's due to Country of Origin Labeling laws that went into effect a decade ago. But the laws don't apply to seafood that's been "processed," no matter how minimally.

A processed food item is defined as "a retail item derived from a covered commodity that has undergone specific processing resulting in a change (of) character." "Cooking (e.g. frying, broiling, grilled, boiling, steaming, baking, roasting)" is an example of a process that results in such a change.

"It was a surprise to all of us who worked very hard to get seafood included in all product forms," said Mark Vinsel, executive administrator for United Fishermen of Alaska, which represents 35 fishing groups.

Bering Sea king and snow crab fisheries have been hurt by the lack of labeling.

"Since all crab are required to be cooked right after delivery, they are exempt," said Jake Jacobsen, director of the Inter-Cooperative Exchange, a harvester group that catches 70 percent of the Bering Sea crab quota.

The push to exclude products such as canned, pouched or smoked fish and steamed crab, Jacobsen said, came from the U.S. tuna fleet.

"They had a much more powerful lobby," he said.

Most crabbers believe the public has a right to know where their crab comes from, and they have not backed down.

"Right now when a consumer goes into a grocery store they don't know if the crab comes from Russia or Newfoundland or Alaska," Jacobsen said. "We think American consumers will prefer Alaskan product, especially if there is a chance that much of the crab imported from Russia might be illegal."

A McDowell Group analysis showed almost 100 million pounds of Russian crab entered the U.S. in 2013, valued at roughly $600 million. An estimated 40 percent of king crab sold in world markets was from Russian harvests.

The situation has improved somewhat due to tighter international regulations, but Jacobsen said it's too soon to tell.

"There is still illegal crab going into China and Korea and finding its way into the U.S. but there is no way to tell if it's legal or not because there is no traceability requirement," Jacobsen said.

Crabbers have gone directly to buyers and retailers with their complaints, too. Two of them, HyVee and Publix, only source crab from Alaska, and Jacobsen hopes more will follow suit.

Meanwhile, the push to get USA labeling on Alaska crab will continue.

"Absolutely," he said. "It is a big issue to us."

Seafood champions sought

The Obama administration wants to honor fishermen and coastal communities that are helping preserve and protect America's fishing industry.

"Nominate someone you know and admire for contributing to the ongoing recovery of America's fishing industry and our fishing communities as a White House Champion of Change for Sustainable Seafood," said an administration press release.

Nominees may include fishermen who are leaders in promoting sustainable fishing practices, seafood processors, purveyors, chefs and other business owners, community leaders and innovators in the field of mariculture. Visit www.whitehouse.gov/champions and select "Sustainable Seafood" as the theme. Deadline for nominations is Sept. 9.

Peggy Parker, Science and Sustainability Editor
SeafoodNews.com 1-781-861-1441
Editorial Email: Editor@seafood.com
Reporter's Email: peggyparker@seafood.com

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