Tue. Sep 2 2014

Industry urges Feds IUU and Seafood Fraud Task Force to keep the two issues separate


Letters: Alaska Crab fishermen dispute harm of Russian ban, say it would clean up IUU crab  


Maine lobstermen fetching better prices with the catch trending at more traditional pace this season  


California Senate sends seafood mislabeling bill to Governor for final approval   (1)


Toothfish TACS to be set in Oct. with bulk of 2014/15 fishing to get going in fourth quarter  


Raw material shortage forces major Russian fish processor Murmansk Fish Factory to shut down


WWF calls for support of Japan's 50% bluefin reduction target; will boycott if not accepted by WCPC  


After shortlived dip, white shrimp prices rising in China, and predicted to remain high this fall  


Influx of parasitic lampreys are feasting on Fraser River's sockeye run


EPA asks Alaska District Court to reject Pebble request to halt veto process until permit issued


U MASS starts semester with Guiness record lobster and clam bake for students


Long Island firm finds oysters gateway for China Seafood Exports


Early in cold war with Russia, US paid fishermen to be spies in case Russia invaded Alaska


California's "wetfish" industry thrives as one of world's best managed fisheries (Opinion)


What's happened to the 'cod' of Cape Cod, both tourists and fishermen ask   (1)


Louisbourg Seafoods' mussel processing operations can stay in Nova Scotia with Cape Breton facility


Rockfish study ties ocean acidification to changing fish behaviors (Fish Radio)


Congress urged to make F/V discharge exemption permanent before temporary law expires in December


Salmon and trout farming grows on upper reaches of Yellow River in China


Plans for more oyster farms in Nova Scotia's Powell Cove met with environmental, regulatory concerns


Seafood.com News Summary Tuesday Sept. 2, 2014


Fri. Aug 29 2014

Caution sounded on Fraser sockeye run, as catches lower than expected this week  


Proposal to give Rec Groups five year review of fish allocations a red flag in Begich Magnuson bill


Fresh Alaska halibut scarce on East Coast this year, as Canadian Atlantic Halibut imports increase


Blue North Fisheries hopes Port of Seattle's new CEO continues strong support for fishing industry


Boston Sword and Tuna going all out to get fish back into Market Basket stores quickly


Chinese authorities arrest 6 OSI employees involved in expired meat distribution scandal


Louisiana seeks data from shrimpers on catches of Asian tiger shrimp


Transient Orca sightings set record in Salish Sea this year


NPFMC member Duncan Fields lists seven considerations for any catch share program (Fish Radio)


Feds agree to return $71,500 seized from fishermen's cooperative in South Thomaston, Maine


Scots firm Landcatch takes 45 percent stake in Troutlodge


Egg bearing Female Atlantic Lobster Hauled up in Trap off Vancouver


Sanford and NZ King Salmon converting salmon offcuts into pet food for US market


Spanish researchers working toward commercial full cycle culture of octopuses


Russian authorities inspecting 100 more McDonald's restaurants, more closures possible


Red Lobster to bring back Endless Shrimp starting Sept 1 with more diverse menu


EPA says California’s Delta water diversion tunnel project could violate federal law


Major Russian retail group says salmon and tilapia prices are poised to rise in Sept.


Ben E. Keith Foods & Dot Foods talk about technologies and capabilities at their new facilities


Scottish Salmon Co. posts record first half sales as change to market orientation pays off


Seafood.com News Summary Friday August 29, 2014


Thu. Aug 28 2014

High prices and low growth in salmon supply will persist for several more years says Rabobank  


Coast Guard chases illegal fishers in the Gulf, failure to fund port state treaty hurts response


Icon of Alaska oyster industry struggles to make a closed cycle oyster farm work in Prince Wlm Sound


Researchers find Hanasaki (spiny) king crabs are moving eastward into Norton Sound (Fish Radio)


Pew: with the worst fisheries mgt record in the country, New England should not loosen habitat rules


Letters: Crabmeat article made incorrect statements about quality of imports  


Video: Proposed ban on Russian crab could have unintended consequences


US Customs will start collecting duty rate cash deposits from Indian, Thai shrimp exporters today  


Juneau Empire strongly supports calls for US to ban Russian seafood imports


Market Basket deal ends bitter feud, mad rush to restock stores


Russian Sea buys more Chinese, Korean affiliated pollock companies, now by far largest quota holder


Second quarter difficult for most restaurant chains, many faced traffic declines


Alaska judges considering Yup'ik religious appeal of lower Kuskokwim king salmon conviction


Kodiak Alaska fisheries Gubernatorial Debate will be held tonight


NE Atlantic Mackerel stocks at record levels with huge biomass, unprecedented distribution  


Alabama's new red snapper reporting program shows feds grossly overestimated state's June landings


Mekong Delta black tiger shrimp and pangasius production dropped in August  


Chilean halibut aquaculture project ready to move to production trials if funding secured


Former Lyons Seafoods executive Iain Shone hired as GAA's Development Director


NOAA now seeking public comments on final proposal to establish Gulf of Mexico aquaculture standards


U.S. GDP for second quarter revised upward to 4.2 percent


Seafood.com News Summary Thursday August 28, 2014


Wed. Aug 27 2014

United Alaska Congressional Delegation urges Obama to ban Russian seafood imports


Imported blue crabmeat shortage sends prices to record highs, US buyers flocking to domestic product  


Seafood.com News Summary Wednesday Aug 27, 2014


Friends of Putin profit from Russia's food import ban


GAA calls on shrimp farmers to complete on-line EMS survey available in 7 languages


Dalian shipping fresh seafood in special high-speed refrigerated rail cars to other parts of China


Salmar puts plans for Chilean salmon venture on hold citing production cost and output concerns  


High food prices lead to trade-offs even in upper-income households


Australia's Ferguson using China's lobster appetite for other trading options as tariffs come down


Proposal to limit or close Cook Inlet razor clam fishing included in Fish Board's 2014-15 agenda


FDA still reviewing changes made in Linda Bean's lobster processing operations after warning letter


Outback re-running Steak and Unlimited Shrimp special, from August 20th


Cooke returns to salmon processing in Maine, sees uptick in consumer demand for Maine salmon


Russia's poor salmon catch this year hampering efforts to find replacement for banned fish


Bristol Bay River Academy gets Western Alaskans jobs as river guides (Fish radio)


Chesapeake Bay "dead zone" particularly bad this August affecting fish and crabs


After freshwater walleye gets MSC nod Canadian fishermen frustrated with export barriers


Japan will try to reinstate Antarctic "research" whaling at upcoming IWC meeting


DFO prepares to tamp down gear conflicts as more PEI fishermen turn to eel harvesting


Cape Breton Bivalve expanding its mussel farming operation and adding processing line


Marine Harvest says it will rise to challenges of Russian sanctions, sees higher prices by year end


Tue. Aug 26 2014

Seafood.com News Summary Tuesday Aug 26, 2014


With battle for Market Basket apparently nearly over, can it thrive again? (Opinion)


Fraser sockeye run still coming on strong   (1) 


Apalachicola oyster recovery getting over $6 million in federal disaster funds


S&P Downgrades American Seafood Group, says 'will have difficulty complying with financial covenants


Crab poaching by Russians in Japanese EEZ rises rapidly, reflecting more enforcement in Russia


Captain D's strikes two more franchise deals that will open stores in Georgia and Florida


Wegmans to launch own brand of Gulf shrimp as part of promotional campaign with Marketing Coalition


India sets ambitious seafood export target: doubling value in three years to $10 billion


Popeyes ramping up seafood choices as part of successful strategy to differentiate


Ocean acidication poses latest threat to Long Island Sound's shellfish industry


Newfoundland invests in online sea lice monitoring system


Proposals now being sought to gauge economic potential of Alaskan mariculture (Fish Radio)


Russia calls New Zealand's effort to create Ross Sea MPA "territorial games"


Fiji developing snapper fishery as domestic tuna industry struggles


ISSF says Big-eye tuna is experiencing correctable overfishing, not a spiral to disaster  


Japan preparing to propose 50% cut in young tuna catch in Western and Central Pacific  


Burger King will buy Tim Hortons in $11 billion deal


New Ahold USA chief McCann outlines his ambitious "Project Thunder" plans


Terrebone fishermen upset over disruptive seismic survey during shrimp season


Western Pacific Fishery Council calls on President Obama to abandon vast marine monument


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Industry urges Feds IUU and Seafood Fraud Task Force to keep the two issues separate

SEAFOODNEWS.COM by John Sackton Sept 2, 2014

The deadline for submitting comments to the Presidential task force on IUU fishing and Seafood Fraud is midnight today.
 
A number of industry organizations have spoken up, focusing on similar themes:
 
-there is no widespread evidence of IUU seafood in the US, despite some claims by NGO's.  There may be an issue with illegal crab, and where specific areas and markets can be addressed, the government should look into further action.
 
-The issue of IUU fishing and Seafood fraud are quite distinct.  Seafood fraud, including mislabeling, underweight packaging, excessive processing and glazing - all can occur on fully legally harvested fish.   Likewise, IUU fish can be completely properly labeled as to species, packaging, country of origin etc.  Conflating the two issues does not lead to any reasonable course of action.
 
Here are some of the comments that caught our eye:
 
Patrick McGuiness, Fisheries Council of Canada:
 
"We understand that the March 2014 report in the Marine Policy journal: "Estimates of Illegal and Underreported Fish and Seafood Imports in the USA"; which estimates that illegal and unrepo1ted catches represented 20-32% by weight of wild-caught seafood apparently has bought IUU fishing to the forefront in the US Administration...

Full Story »

Letters: Alaska Crab fishermen dispute harm of Russian ban, say it would clean up IUU crab

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Letters]  Sept. 2, 2014

To the Editor:

Mr. Sackton, I respectfully think your video on 8/27/14 was flawed and missed some important points regarding the King Crab market and its potential “destruction” if a retaliatory ban on Russian seafood was implemented by the US government.

 Your point on pure marketing theory has merit, but when you discuss “devastating the King Crab market”, you should consider the fact that the market is already wrecked now by allowing large quantities of illegal Russian crab into the market. This illegal crab increases supply and artificially decreases market prices paid to honest Alaskan crab fishermen and processors.
 
As Alaska crab fishermen our noses have already been cut off despite our faces for the last 20 years, enduring huge quantities of illegal Russian crab into the United States and the world, costing fishermen, processors and the State of Alaska over $600 million (estimated by the McDowell Group, Inc. for the Alaska Bering Sea Crabbers) in lost revenue, just since the year 2000’.
 
 Last year Russia exported...

Full Story »

Maine lobstermen fetching better prices with the catch trending at more traditional pace this season

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Bangor Daily News] by Bill Trotter and Tim Cox - September 2, 2014

If there is anything commercial fishermen in Maine have learned over the past several years, it is that things aren't the way they used to be.

Scallop catches are creeping back up as prices have hit an all-time high. Elver prices have come down a bit but remain historically high after shooting into the stratosphere -- along with statewide landings totals -- in the past two years. Urchin landings, however, continue to slide while the populations of cod and northern shrimp in the Gulf of Maine have sunk to their lowest levels on record...

Full Story »

Toothfish TACS to be set in Oct. with bulk of 2014/15 fishing to get going in fourth quarter

SEAFOODNEWS.COM by Michael Ramsingh - September 2, 2014

Coming up in October the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Resources (CCAMLR) will meet to hash out TACs for toothfish fisheries that fall under the Commission's regulatory scope. Since a majority of the region's catch comes from fisheries that will get underway in the fourth quarter, following is a rundown of some of the driving forces behind toothfish stock management along with how the fishery performed under these regulations during the 2013/14 fishing season.

There are 13 toothfish fisheries that fall under the CCAMLAR’s management jurisdiction; another five fisheries fall under the management scope of EEZ’s in Argentina, Australia, Chile and the Falkland Islands/Isles Malvinas – the TAC for the combined fisheries was 23,991 tons during the 2013/14 fishing season, representing virtually the total availability of legal toothfish.   Members of the Coalition of Legal Toothfish Operators (COLTO) caught about 80 percent of this TAC...

Full Story »

WWF calls for support of Japan's 50% bluefin reduction target; will boycott if not accepted by WCPC

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SCOM] September 2, 2014

At the 10th North Subcommittee of the Western and Central Pacific Commission the World Wildlife Fund (WFF) has called to reduce the harvest of immature Pacific blue tuna by 50 percent. The Fund said should their prospoal not be accepted they would push for a complete ban to all bluefin tuna catches.

The international meeting, taking place this week in Fukuoka, Japan, has gathered nine national governments to examine the situation of the bluefin tuna stock which is currently estimated to be at around 4% of the unfished population.

During the meeting the WWF proposed a number of fishery management stategies to help rebuild the stock, these include: The adoption of a long-term stock recovery plan, with limit/target reference point and management measures for Pacific bluefin tuna; a 50% catch reduction of immature Pacific bluefin tuna; the restriction of adult Pacific bluefin tuna catches to 2002 and 2004 average; and the introduction of a Catch Document Scheme in the Pacific bluefin tuna fishery to improve monitoring and management measures and secure traceability.

Full Story »

Influx of parasitic lampreys are feasting on Fraser River's sockeye run

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [The Vancouver Sun] by Larry Pynn - September 2, 2014

The parasitic Pacific lamprey is taking a bite out of the estimated more than 21 million sockeye returning to the Fraser River this year - a bumper harvest but short of the unexpectedly high returns of 2010.

The latest median return estimates released Friday by the Pacific Salmon Commission include runs of 1.9 million early-summer sockeye, seven million summer, and 12.73 million latesummer, including the Adams River run. The early Stuart run also yielded more than 200,000 sockeye.

However, it's possible the late-run estimate will be lowered next week to nine million...

Full Story »

U MASS starts semester with Guiness record lobster and clam bake for students

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [The Associated Press]  September 2, 2014

AMHERST, Mass. (AP) — The new school year at the University of Massachusetts has started with a record-setting feast.

More than 3,000 traditional New England clambake dinners were served on the Amherst campus on Monday.
 
Chefs prepared more than 3,000 lobsters, 6,000 little neck clams, 3,000 steamers, more than 6,000 ears of corn and 1,500 pounds of potatoes for students and staff.
 
There was no previous record for largest New England clambake, but Guinness World Record officials had set a minimum bar at 1,500 meals in eight hours. UMass reached that mark in about an hour.
 
Ken Toong, executive director of auxiliary services, says most of the food was locally sourced, and all waste, including plates and flatware, will be composted.
 
The $70,000 cost of the clambake was covered entirely by donations and sponsorships...

Full Story »

Early in cold war with Russia, US paid fishermen to be spies in case Russia invaded Alaska

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Associated Press] Sept. 2, 2014

 

Fearing a Russian invasion and occupation of Alaska, the U.S. government in the early Cold War years recruited and trained fishermen, bush pilots, trappers and other private citizens across Alaska for a covert network to feed wartime intelligence to the military, newly declassified Air Force and FBI documents show.

Invasion of Alaska? Yes. It seemed like a real possibility in 1950.
 
"The military believes that it would be an airborne invasion involving bombing and the dropping of paratroopers," one FBI memo said. The most likely targets were thought to be Nome, Fairbanks, Anchorage and Seward.
 
So FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover teamed up on a highly classified project, code-named Washtub, with the newly created Air Force Office of Special Investigations, headed by Hoover protege and former FBI official Joseph Carroll.
 
The secret plan was to have citizen-agents in key locations in Alaska...

 

Full Story »

What's happened to the 'cod' of Cape Cod, both tourists and fishermen ask

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Los Angeles Times] by Alana Semuels Sept 2, 2014

- Reporting from Chatham, MA
 
There aren't enough cod left on Cape Cod.
 
That soon becomes evident to the tourists crowding an observation deck to watch fishermen unload their boats in this picturesque harbor sheltered from the ocean by sandy dunes.
 
Today's catch: pounds of skate, a fish that looks like a sting ray until fishermen catch it, when they cut off its wings and throw the body back into the water. The skate wings, white triangular pieces of flesh trailed by streams of blood, slide down ramps onto the loading dock.
 
"Eeeewww," says 5-year-old Felix Haight. "It looks like raspberry jelly," he adds, as his mother wrinkles her nose.
 
The next boat brings in dogfish, which looks like a mix between a shark and a lizard, and is no more appealing to the tourists.
 
For generations, the fish sliding down this ramp would have been cod, a ground fish that has been caught in these parts since the Pilgrims landed on Cape Cod...

Full Story »

Rockfish study ties ocean acidification to changing fish behaviors (Fish Radio)

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Fish Radio with Laine Welch] September 2, 2014 

This is Fish Radio. I’m Laine Welch …. Corrosive oceans can change fish behavior. I’ll tell you more after this 

Any child’s chemistry set will show our oceans are becoming more acidic. It comes from the ocean’s absorbing increasing amounts of carbon dioxide caused by global burning of fossil fuels for energy. The acids prevent shells and scales from growing on marine creatures. Now scientists have found the acidity also changes fish behavior...

Full Story »
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California Senators send seafood mislabeling bill to Governor for final approval

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [SCOM] - September 2, 2014

California lawmakers have voted on a piece of legislation that will make it illegal for vendors to knowlingly sell or offer to sell wholesale or retail seafood without properly labeling the common name of the fish or shellfish.   The bill, which will now go to state Governor Jerry Brown for final approval, also makes it illegal to mislabel seafood as farmed or wild caught, along with misrepresenting an item's country of origin.

On Friday, the Calif. State Senate gave final legislative approval to Senate Bill 1138, originally proposed by Senator Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima)...

Full Story »

Raw material shortage forces major Russian fish processor Murmansk Fish Factory to shut down

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [The Barents Observer] by Trude Petersen - September 2, 2014

One of Russia’s largest fish processing companies, Murmansk Fish Factory has had to shut down because of lack of raw materials due to the ban on import of fish from Norway. The company threatens to sue the Government if problems aren’t solved.

“Work has been discontinued, as shipments of live fish from Norwegian vessels stopped due to the sanctions”, the company’s manager Mikhail Zub says to ITAR-TASS. “We have written a letter to the Prime Minister, but have still not received any answer”.

The fish processing plant in Murmansk had contracts with Norwegian exporters on 31,000 tons of cod, capelin, pollock, haddock and herring to be delivered in the last half of 2014...

Full Story »

After shortlived dip, white shrimp prices rising in China, and predicted to remain high this fall

SEAFOODNEWS.COM  [Shuichabn News]  Translated by Amy Zhong Sept. 2, 2014

The whiteleg shrimp supply is remains limited while the purchase price stays high in the four provinces of the South China. 

This year can be divided into three different stages based on the prices of whiteleg shrimps with the size of 50 shrimps per jin (1 jin =0.5 kilo) in the Pearl River Delta area (PRD), Zhanjiang and Fujian during 2014. The first stage is the period from February to April when the shrimp price is very high. The second one lasts from May to the late June when the price is in decline and is depressing. And the third one starts with the early July when the price begins to rise.  

It is learnt that the shrimp traders of various places have increased their purchasing volume of whiteleg shrimps in preparation for the coming Mid-Autumn Festival. And the shrimp price has stayed high recently and it is expected that there will be an increase in the price during the holiday owing to the limited shrimp supply.  
 

Full Story »

EPA asks Alaska District Court to reject Pebble request to halt veto process until permit issued

SEAFOODNEWS.COM EPA [Inside EPA] by -- David LaRoss - Sept. 2, 2014

EPA and environmentalists are asking a federal district court to allow the agency to proceed with its consideration of a novel preemptive Clean Water Act (CWA) veto of disposal sites for the planned Pebble Mine in Alaska during existing litigation over the veto process, saying industry has failed to provide justification to stay the veto review.

The Pebble Limited Partnership (PLP), which is developing the mine in Bristol Bay, AK, has "no likelihood of success on the merits" of their challenge to the EPA's authority to issue a preemptive veto, argues the Department of Justice (DOJ) on the agency's behalf in an Aug. 18 brief. DOJ says plaintiffs' core claim in the case -- that EPA can only issue a veto after PLP applies for a permit -- is based on a "wholesale misreading" of the water law. Relevant documents are available on InsideEPA.com. (Doc. ID: 2479726)
 
PLP has announced plans for the mine and done general exploratory work since 2002 but has not yet applied for a CWA section 404(c) dredge-and-fill permit for the mining project, including disposal sites.
 
EPA, under pressure from environmentalists and local conservation groups, has launched a rare investigation of whether to invoke its 404(c) authority to veto disposal sites...

Full Story »

Long Island firm finds oysters gateway for China Seafood Exports

[Newsday] by  Victor Ocasio Sept 2, 2014

More Northeast US companies are exporting to China, even small firms that never considered it before.  K&B Seafoods - a regional distributor, tells Victor Ocasio how they started exporting - 

K&B Seafood Inc. co-owners Tom Kehoe and Roger Boccio, wholesalers of oysters, lobsters and other shellfish, are working hard to grow their new business exporting to China.

Since November, the principals of the East Northport business have visited China twice to establish trade with food distributors. Now the company ships a ton of oysters and other shellfish to Hong Kong every week, and China shipments make up about 10 percent to 15 percent of the company's total sales.
 
"Oysters opened the door for us," said Kehoe, whose orders from China now include everything from clams to Boston lobsters. Overall, foreign sales are about a quarter of the company's $7 million in annual revenue. K&B began shipping to China in December. Only six years ago the company's foreign sales were negligible.
 
Recently, its business in China assumed even greater importance when the company lost access to its largest customer, in Moscow, after Russia banned imports of American foods as tensions over Ukraine escalated.
 
K&B's growing exports to China show that Long Island companies - particularly those in the agriculture trade - have opportunities to sell to a country known for exporting goods to the United States....

Full Story »

California's "wetfish" industry thrives as one of world's best managed fisheries (Opinion)

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [The Orange County Register] Opinion by D.B. Pleschner - September 2, 2014 

D.B. Pleschner is executive director of the California Wetfish Producers Association

Fishermen are allowed to harvest only a small percentage of the overall fish population.

Despite gloomy predictions of El Nino and the broader impact of climate change on the ocean and planet, California's historic wetfish fisheries carry on - still the foundation of California's fishing economy.

More than 150 years ago, Chinese fishermen rowed Monterey Bay at night in sampans, with baskets of burning fat pine on the bow used as torches to attract market squid, which fishermen harvested with round-haul nets...

Full Story »

Louisbourg Seafoods' mussel processing operations can stay in Nova Scotia with Cape Breton facility

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [The Chronicle Herald] September 2, 2014

After years of trucking the delicacy off-island, a Cape Breton seafood company will begin processing its St. Anns Harbour mussels at home.

It was announced Tuesday that Cape Breton Bivalve Inc. will establish a mussel processing line, after receiving a $500,000 repayable loan from the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency.

The project will expand and upgrade the former 5M Aqua Farms in St. Anns Harbour, and had led to the development of a mussel processing line at the company’s Northsyde Processing facility in North Sydney...

Full Story »