Alaska Board of Fisheries Meeting in Kodiak

Image: Alaska Department of Fish and Game.

New management proposals for salmon, sablefish and herring are on the table as the Alaska Board of Fisheries meetings at the Kodiak Marketplace in downtown Kodiak through Friday, Jan. 12.

A total of 30 proposals, including over a dozen on salmon management around Kodiak, are on the table for the meeting, which began Tuesday, Jan. 9.

A number of reports on the agenda range from a review of salmon escapement goals in the Kodiak Management area to the Kodiak management area commercial salmon fishery annual management report, plus a Commercial Fisheries Entry Commission report on permit holdings and estimates of gross earnings in Kodiak commercial salmon fisheries from 1975 through 2022.

The meeting is open to the public, and a live video stream is set to be available at the ADF&G website,, as are all proposals and reports scheduled to be heard.

Agenda items include Proposal 52, which would establish a new Kodiak Area commercial sablefish fishery, and Proposal 57, which would create two herring seasons: the first one in the spring to target sax roe herring and the second, in autumn, to target herring for markets in smoked, canned, pickled and other product forms.

In Proposal 57, proponent Bruce Schactler contends that as the sac roe market continues to decline, the need to diversify and bring new value to the herring fishery, management must be modified to allow harvest to take place when the herring are past their spawning phase, and into the high fat stage of life.

New product made from herring, be it canned, pickled, or smoked requires higher fat and better nutrition profiles, Schactler said. This can only be realized after the herring have been feeding for 5 or 6 months past spawning, he wrote in his proposal.

“Most of the allowable herring harvest in Alaska will once again go unharvested in 2023 due to the falling market for ‘roe herring’ that has been the case for many years now,” Schactler said. “To change the options and direction for unmarketable Alaska herring, management must change to being allowing access to these needed food grade herring.”