A 50-year situation: the market dynamic between fishing fleets and processors in Bristol Bay

This year, Bristol Bay’s 50 cents per pound base price had fleet members questioning the industry’s longevity. The dynamic between fleets and processors has existed for decades, with permit-holding fishing crews delivering their catch before knowing its cost, and processors relying on them to do so. KDLG’s Christina McDermott sat down with economist Gunnar Knapp, who spent decades studying Bristol Bay’s salmon markets, to learn more about the history of this relationship, and what it means going forward. Christina McDermott: Just a little background: this past summer, many fleet members were upset when the price was announced at 50 cents per pound, which is the lowest in the past 40 years when adjusted for inflation. The announcement came fairly late in the season. There was protest, and there was a lot of discussion on the processors’ respective power to set that price. And I’m interested in going back a little bit. What opportunities [did] the fleet have to sell their fish 50 years ago, let’s say, or 20 years ago? Has it always [been] this relationship [that] there are these processors and there are these fishermen? >>click to read<< 10:00

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