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2013 Alaska Salmon Harvest Sets New Record

Southeast chum seine.

Southeast chum seine.

© Alaska Department of Fish & Game

(Juneau) – The Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) has completed compilation of preliminary values for the 2013 commercial salmon fishery. Powered by a record pink salmon harvest of 219 million fish, this year’s harvest ranks as the second most valuable on record. At $691.1 million, 2013 is only exceeded by the 1988 harvest value of $724 million. In addition to setting a record for pink salmon, the total number of salmon harvested also set a new record at 272 million fish.

“Our salmon managers across the state have done an excellent job of ensuring sustainability of our salmon stocks while optimizing fishing opportunity. We had an outstanding year over-all, though some areas returns did not allow for desired harvest levels,” said Director Jeff Regnart, ADF&G Commercial Fisheries Division. “We are pleased that so many Alaskans are able to enjoy the economic benefits of our salmon resources.”  

Sockeye salmon narrowly held onto its position as the most valuable salmon species harvested in Alaska’s commercial salmon fisheries, with a statewide value of $284 million. Almost half of this came from Bristol Bay, where the price was up even though the harvest was modest. Pink salmon, riding a huge wave of production across multiple fishing areas, brought in $277 million. Chum, coho, and Chinook salmon, respectively, filled the remainder of the ranks.

Bristol Bay, usually the most valuable salmon fishery in the state, fell to third place this year behind Southeast Alaska and Prince William Sound. Southeast and Prince William sound realized the largest pink salmon harvests ever recorded in their management areas; just over 91 million pink salmon from Prince William Sound, and 89.2 million pink salmon from Southeast Alaska.

This year’s title of most valuable salmon fishing area in the state belongs to Southeast Alaska, with an all- species harvest value of $219 million. In addition to the $124 million in pink salmon, Southeast chum and coho salmon yielded values of $43.6 million and $23.4 million, respectively. In addition, the Chinook salmon harvest in Southeast Alaska was worth $17 million.

Kodiak and Chignik also had very good years with all-species harvests worth $61 and $23 million, respectively. For the first time in several years, the Alaska Peninsula also enjoyed a decent pink salmon harvest.

The Yukon and Kotzebue management areas had good chum salmon returns, but Chinook salmon returns throughout the Arctic/Yukon/Kuskokwim region were again low and provided no commercial fishing opportunities.

The Upper Cook Inlet sockeye salmon harvest was just over half the forecast. Management restrictions on the sockeye fishery were required to conserve a small Chinook salmon return to the Kenai River.

Values provided by ADF&G are based on estimated ex-vessel prices and do not include post season bonuses or price adjustments. The final value for the 2013 salmon fishery will be determined in 2014 after seafood processors, buyers, and direct marketers report the average prices paid to fishermen in 2013. It is entirely possible that after final prices are determined, the 2013 season, without accounting for inflation, could surpass 1988 as the most valuable salmon harvest in history.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

2013 Alaska Commercial Salmon Harvests — Exvessel Values    
Source: ADF&G, Oct. 13, 2013      
 
   
PRELIMINARY DATA:   2013 Salmon Season        
             
            Estimated 
    Average Weight Average Number of Fish Pounds of Fish  Exvessel Value
Area Species (in pounds) Price per Pound (in thousands of fish) (in thousands
of pounds)
(in thousands
of dollars)
SOUTHEAST CHINOOK 13.00 $6.70 200 2,601 $17,423
  SOCKEYE 6.03 $1.85 910 5,488 $10,140
  COHO 5.70 $1.17 3,504 19,987 $23,410
  PINK 3.52 $0.40 89,234 313,714 $124,742
  CHUM 8.16 $0.52 10,220 83,415 $43,638
  totals     104,067 425,206 $219,354
PRINCE WILLIAM SOUND CHINOOK 16.79 $5.46 10 175 $956
  SOCKEYE 6.08 $2.28 2,280 13,870 $31,677
  COHO 7.81 $1.33 581 4,539 $6,060
  PINK 2.81 $0.41 91,017 255,707 $106,017
  CHUM 7.32 $0.60 4,006 29,325 $17,475
  totals     97,895 303,615 $162,186
COOK INLET CHINOOK 12.98 $2.89 5 71 $206
  SOCKEYE 6.25 $2.25 2,743 17,141 $38,492
  COHO 6.11 $0.85 257 1,572 $1,340
  PINK 3.10 $0.38 2,097 6,500 $2,465
  CHUM 7.62 $0.43 193 1,472 $630
        5,295 26,756 $43,132
BRISTOL BAY CHINOOK 18.0 $0.77 19 350 $266
  SOCKEYE 6.0 $1.50 15,400 92,000 $138,000
  COHO 6.0 $0.80 135 810 $648
  PINK 3.0 $0.30 1 2 <1
  CHUM 6.0 $0.30 870 5,600 $1,670
  totals     16,424 98,762 $140,584
KODIAK CHINOOK 7.50 $0.79 34 255 $202
  SOCKEYE 5.76 $1.59 2,570 14,792 $23,511
  COHO 6.62 $0.45 268 1,777 $804
  PINK 3.16 $0.39 28,162 89,068 $34,599
  CHUM 7.83 $0.45 792 6,203 $2,785
  totals     31,826 112,095 $61,900
CHIGNIK CHINOOK 12.19 $1.07 3 36 $39
  SOCKEYE 7.11 $1.29 2,391 17,006 $21,945
  COHO 7.05 $0.38 32 225 $87
  PINK 2.99 $0.33 875 2,622 $872
  CHUM 7.72 $0.32 154 1,192 $385
  totals     3,456 21,081 $23,328
ALASKA PENINSULA CHINOOK 12.60 $0.86 7 83 $71
and  SOCKEYE 5.90 $1.22 2,912 17,094 $20,855
ALEUTIAN ISLANDS COHO 6.80 $0.50 303 2,064 $1,032
  PINK 3.10 $0.35 7,766 24,170 $8,460
  CHUM 7.20 $0.32 1,072 7,724 $2,472
  totals     12,060 51,136 $32,890
KUSKOKWIM CHINOOK 17.1 $1.00 3 44 $44
  SOCKEYE 6.4 $1.00 52 329 $329
  COHO 7.6 $1.00 157 1,191 $1,191
  PINK          
  CHUM 6.8 $1.00 123 835 $835
  totals     334 2,399 $2,399
YUKON CHINOOK          
  SOCKEYE          
  COHO 6.96 $1.06 62 430 $457
  PINK          
  CHUM 6.20 $0.68 710 4,410 $3,037
  totals     771 4,841 $3,494
NORTON SOUND CHINOOK          
  SOCKEYE 7.3 $1.49 <1 1 $2
  COHO 7.6 $1.77 54 411 $729
  PINK 2.9 $0.22 8 24 $5
  CHUM 6.9 $0.55 119 823 $450
  totals     181 1,260 $1,186
KOTZEBUE CHINOOK          
  SOCKEYE          
  COHO          
  PINK          
  CHUM 8.0 $0.27 319 2,555 $689
  totals 8.00 0.27 319 2,555 $689
ALASKA TOTALS CHINOOK 12.88 $5.31 281 3,615 $19,208
  SOCKEYE 6.07 $1.60 29,257 177,720 $284,951
  COHO 6.17 $1.08 5,353 33,007 $35,757
  PINK 3.16 $0.40 219,160 691,806 $277,160
  CHUM 7.73 $0.52 18,578 143,556 $74,067
  totals     272,630 1,049,705 $691,143
             
Preliminary figures may not total exactly due to rounding.        
Estimates based on fish tickets and reports from Area Managers.      
DATA NOT FOR LEGAL INTERPRETATIONS.          

 

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