Pollock Fishery A Season Gets Underway

The A season for the lucrative pollock fishery is underway
in the Bering Sea, with a quota of about 1.258 million metric tons, with
relatively mild weather conditions initially reported. Winds are light and
forecasters predicted temperatures in the 30s, with a strong possibility of
rain during the weekend.
Base prices for this multi-million dollar fishery are not
yet posted, but Frank Kelty, resource analyst for the city of Unalaska, is
estimating that given a slightly larger total allowable catch over last year,
revenues will be close to those of a year ago, even if the ex-vessel value of
the pollock drops slightly.
Because of Steller sea lion restrictions, the National
Marine Fisheries Service has already rolled over a portion of the pollock quota
from Adak into other Bering Sea fisheries.
A season pollock, which is about 40 percent of the quota,
gets a higher value because of its roe content. Still the B season pollock
fishery covers about 60 percent of the quota. The versatile pollock is in high
demand in domestic, European and Asian markets, for products ranging from roe
to fillets and surimi.
Kelty estimates that the municipality of Unalaska will reap
about $5.5 million overall in taxes for the A and B seasons of the pollock