May Fisheries Update at SPC

Greetings SPC owners,

Spring Kings: The spring king openings started near Sitka this week. Production has been slow so far. The normal trend is to have catch rates increase weekly throughout May and June. ADF&G has been doing a great job trying to give trollers as much access to these hatchery chinook as possible. Prices are $8.00/lb for troll caught kings. California has opened for king trolling. Copper River opens up shortly. These other fisheries will add to the available product on the market and hold prices down.

Dinglebar: The targeted fishery for Lingcod opens May 16th at 12:01am. SPC is going to be buying as much of this fishery as we can. We will be posting cash prices for lingcod and bycatch yelloweye close to the opening of the fishery. The market is stable for these fish. We expect the prices to be similar to what we were offering during the yelloweye fishery earlier this year.

Longline Bait: Small pollock is still hard to find. We have two options in stock now.  Our next container of small pollock from Japan just cleared customs in Seattle. It will be on it’s way north shortly. Part of the load is very small, 100-200 grams. Part of the load is small, 200-300 grams. The reports that we have gotten from fishermen who have used this pollock are positive. There is also a container of jig caught, frozen at sea ilex squid on the way north. Two pallets of Pacific Sauri are also in the next load of Bait. We will get this unloaded and priced as soon as it arrives. We also have affordable squid and pollock available for pot fishing.

Tenders: I am glad to announce that our Troll tenders renewed their contracts for the year.  We have the Sealion and Deer Harbor II on contract for 2019.  Norm and Amber will offer the same great service as before.  The Harmony is on deck to help us out at Crawfish Inlet when those chums show up. I will send more updates on tender service as we approach the summer troll season.

Longline Prices: Halibut prices have been volatile all year. There is continued pressure from Atlantic fresh halibut competition.  Most of our halibut is going out fresh. Prices currently are at 5.00/5.50/5.75. Black cod prices are mostly unchanged in the last month. Current sablefish prices are $7.60/6.50/4.00/3.00/2.00/1.50. The SE sablefish quota is 31% caught as of 5/7/19.

Volume and Pooling: Overall, our volumes across the dock have been substantially higher than last year. This is pretty exciting when longline quotas are unchanged from 2018. If this trend continues throughout the season, it will have a positive affect on our operating costs and will help the final settlements. The One-Pool system means that early volume from longline will benefit all of the rest of our pooled product throughout the year.

Safe Travels
Good Fishing,

Stephen Rhoads