Tag Archives: United Catcher Boats.

Pacific Seafood Processor’s Association seeks probe into America’s Finest foreign steel

The trade group representing Alaska’s onshore fish processing plants is challenging a request for an exemption to a federal law limiting the amount of foreign steel allowed in fishing vessel construction. The Pacific Seafood Processor’s Association has major issues with the request for a Jones Act waiver sought by Fisherman’s Finest, the owner of the embattled flatfish factory trawler American’s Finest, and its builder, the Washington shipyard Dakota Creek Industries. The 261-foot vessel is nearly complete at a cost of at least $60 million, and cannot fish in U.S. waters without the waivers. PSPA’s members include Unisea and Westward in Unalaska, and most of the other fish processors in Alaska. click here to read the story 09:52

Dakota Creek Industries trying to make things right in eyes of Congress

Dakota Creek Industries owner Mike Nelson and his staff have been looking for ways to appease federal lawmakers following the mistake the company made in building the $75 million fishing vessel America’s Finest. The mistake — using too much foreign-formed steel in the vessel’s hull — requires a waiver from the U.S. Congress in order for the ship to fish domestically. The waiver would be for the Jones Act, which requires domestic fishing vessels be built in the U.S. These days, Nelson glances frequently at his cell phone hoping for good news concerning his company’s lobbying efforts in Washington, D.C. click here to read the story 12:12

Fishing-industry groups blast Inslee over his picks for federal council

Gov. Jay Inslee’s handling of nominations for a federal fishery-council seat has come under attack from the leaders of major North Pacific fishing-industry groups, which have taken the unusual step of sending a complaint letter to the U.S. Secretary of Commerce.,, In their letter sent Tuesday, they asked Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross to reject Inslee’s nominations and called for the governor to come up with some new names for a seat on the council. The industry backlash reflects the high stakes in fish politics, where the federal fishery council helps sets the rules for a billion-dollar groundfish harvest, much of which is caught and processed by Seattle-based companies. The letter is signed by the leaders of the Pacific Seafood Processors Association, At-Sea Processors Association, Groundfish Forum, and United Catcher Boats, whose membership collectively catches or processes most the groundfish. Read the article, click here 10:05

Trawlers banned from Unalaska Bay

Unalaska Bay was completely shut down to trawlers by state regulators last week after a long campaign by the Unalaska Native Fisheries Association representing local small boats. The Alaska Board of Fisheries approved UNFA’s request last week while meeting in Anchorage, closing all waters of Unalaska Bay year-round to groundfish fishing with pelagic trawl gear, according to UNFA member and Unalaska resident Walter Tellman. The fish board voted 6-1 to close the bay to trawlers, he said. Opposed, Tellman said, were officials of  and trawler captains. Brent Paine, the executive director of United Catcher Boats, declined to comment this week on the latest closure. Jim Paulin photo  Read the article here 16:14

Alaska groups seek cut in salmon bycatch caught by pollock industry

Tribal organizations and fishing groups in Alaska are urging federal fishery managers to drastically reduce the number of king salmon allowed to be inadvertently caught by commercial pollock trawlers each year. Industry representatives, however, say the harvest of king salmon bycatch has never come close to reaching those limits. They also say some of the salmon caught is frozen and distributed through food banks. “The pollock fishery and the boat owners and the captains are all very, very well aware of the crisis that is occurring in these communities,, Read the rest here 11:18

Trawlers defeat relief for halibut fishermen – Balk at Compensation

The emergency measure was opposed by the At-sea Processors Association, United Catcher Boats, and other industry groups. The failed emergency measure was part of the voting to set quotas for Bering Sea groundfish species, including the billion dollar pollock fishery. Trawlers feared that a reduction in halibut bycatch limits for trawlers could shut them down early, leaving their fish in the water. But halibut fishermen complain that the trawlers are allowed to waste more  than they’ll be allowed to catch for the high-value market, a policy called “unacceptable” by St. Paul mayor Simeon Swetzof. Read the rest here 21:08

Pollock Fleet Sees Spike in Squid Bycatch

While salmon is still the main species that pollock fishermen are trying to avoid taking as bycatch this summer, there’s another creature that’s been causing problems in the Bering Sea. Along with their pollock, fishermen have pulled up about 1,100 metric tons of slimy, pink squid this summer. That’s more than four times their catch limit,,,Read more here 11:48