Thursday, June 30, 2011

Norton Sound herring pays gillnetters $339 a ton

Here's a summary of Norton Sound's herring fishery from Norton Sound Economic Development Corp.

June 30, 2011

Norton Sound herring harvest sets another record for roe recovery

NOME — Norton Sound herring fishermen in June topped their own high mark set a year ago by harvesting herring with an all-time record recovery of roe.

The 744 tons of herring harvested this year were comprised of 14.8 percent roe, on average. The previous record, set last year by Norton Sound harvesters, was 13.5 percent roe recovery.

In total, approximately 25 Norton Sound herring fishermen harvested 810 tons of herring, of which 66 tons were directed to a bait fishery.

Fishermen were paid out a total of more than $274,700 for the entire fishery, an average of $339 per ton.

Prices paid per ton were determined by a sliding scale depending on the roe percentage. Roe recovery ranged from 9 percent to 20 percent, with the majority of the harvest coming in between 13 and 17 percent. Fishermen harvested the herring with gillnets.

Norton Sound Economic Development Corp. has worked to bring a herring buyer to the region for the last two years to conduct a fishery after several years of no commercial herring fishing.

Through an agreement with NSEDC, Icicle Seafoods brought a processing vessel and tenders to Norton Sound in 2010 and 2011.

The roe harvested is sold as a luxury food item in Japan and is often given out during the holidays as gifts.

In addition to negotiating an agreement with Icicle, NSEDC supports the fishery through aerial surveys to determine when the fishing effort should begin and to direct fishermen to high-quality herring once the fishery commences.

This year, biologists from NSEDC's Norton Sound Fisheries Research and Development division flew 29 hours during 15 flights in support of the fishery.

"We would like to thank all our resident fishermen as well as the great crew Icicle brought to Norton Sound. From the crews of the processing vessel and tenders to the aerial survey support, Icicle provided excellent service to all aspects of the fishery," said Reese Huhta, southern manager for NSEDC's Norton Sound Seafood Products.


Anonymous said...

What was the cost of promoting the fishery? A million bucks?

Anonymous said...

2 containers of roe for this sponsored fishery. You know how much fuel was spent on placing tenders and the processor in place? For 2 containers of roe.

Anonymous said...

Glad to hear commercial fishermen were able to earn some money there for a change. Way to go Icicle and Nsedc. Now find a buyer for the pinks.

Anonymous said...

NSEDC payoff to key Unalakleet herring fishermen for 744 tons of Norton Sound herring = $274,700

NSEDC payoff to Icicle Seafood for processing the herring = $350,000+

Continued political support for the NSEDC management elite's high rolling lifestyle in Anchorage = Priceless

Anonymous said...

$272,700 divided by 25 fishermen means that the average payout per fisherman equaled to about $11,000each - peanuts compared to NSEDC's employee Simeon Kinneen's 2009 salary of $122,000! We haven't figured out what great things he has done in 2009 for that big, big salary. Answer the phone?

Another extravagant cost was those 29 hours of flying in "support of the fishery." by Charlie Lean, the only real "biologists from NSEDC's Norton Sound Fisheries Research and Development division..." unless the writer is counting Charlie's support staff from some other agency! 29 hours times $350 per hour is $10,150, so somebody's buddy got about as much as the poor fishermen did.

Yeah, let's spread the WASTE around so it looks like we're doing great things for the poor people of the Norton Sound CDQ region. It would have been cheaper to pay those 25 fishermen not to fish but then again they have to pay NSEDC for their boat, gas and gear loans. Caught between a rock and a hard spot those poor guys.

Anonymous said...

wonder if they broke even

Anonymous said...

The stakeholders of the Norton Sound's CDQ program won't know how much it cost US to promote both the herring and salmon fishery in Southern Norton Sound until possibly 2013 when concerned citizen can check their filed income tax form with the IRS. There is no effort by NSEDC management to be transparent and responsible to the thousands of poor people who supposedly own the CDQ program. It's operations are in control of a handful of men.

It's been said that between NSEDC's northern and southern sectors of their Norton Sound Seafood Products(unfair monopoly with Public Monies), their losses are usually in the millions! Millions of dollars to support 130 fishermen while the poorest of the poor can't subsist for salmon anymore. They have to beg for backbones and fish heads from the lucky few who have all the 'toys' because they have the jobs!

Anonymous said...

Hey why don't you whining bitches get a real job instead of crying about not getting your CDQ charity.

Anonymous said...

Maybe you should read up about the CDQ program. Its goal was to create real jobs. Instead it has created a wealthy elite controlling the CDQ groups mostly living in Anchorage while doling out a few crumbs to the people in the bush communities it was supposed to be helping. Crumbs like this subsidized herring fishery. It isn't supposed to be a charity

Anonymous said...

Us "whining bitches" don't suck up nor are we part of the 'family' - we don't have an Auntie on the Board or an Auntie in the office - we don't have a Daddy on the Board - we don't have cousins or buddies in control - we don't have jack squat not even salmon to subsist anymore because "your CDQ charity", NSEDC, is investing our Public Monies into a big, black hole into the Bering Sea and now the Gulf of Alaska hounding after the pollock millions.

By the way, you could keep "your CDQ charity." because the rest of us won't have guilt on our conscience when all the salmon stocks in the Norton Sound are destroyed. When they become "Endangered" the Norton Sound fishery will have to close - you'll be high and dry with the rest of us then! So much for "your CDQ charity."

Anonymous said...

Twenty-five boats making $10,988 gross in an area where the cost of living is rising out of control? That's not exactly a commercially viable enterprise. If we get another salmon run like last year maybe they can gross another $10, 000 on chums and silvers. How are fishermen supposed to support their families on that?

Anonymous said...

And, those die-hard fish lip suckers will still be broke by Christmas!

Anonymous said...

If one is not mathematically astute then $11,000 for a few days work is a pot of gold alright. It makes it pretty special if one already has one of the few CDQ jobs in a village that brings in a steady income of at least $65,000 a year like maybe the "Community Liaison' job that cousin Bee or buddy Roy has. Enrich your family and friends and they'll support you no matter what until probably the money egg breaks like that one called Humpty-Dumpty.

Anonymous said...

Anybody buy Harvey Sookiayak's F/V Brent L yet? The asking price of $145,000 will take some lucky fisherman 29 years to pay off at a payment of $5,000 a year. How many other NSEDC Board of Directors took advantage of their company's boat and gear loans (for themselves or their kids) while they were or are continuing to steer the BIG ship into the Bering Sea and now the Gulf of Alaska? Kind of a conflict of interest isn't it?

Anonymous said...

Let me see if I got this straight. You are telling the people who are saying NSEDC has failed to do what the CDQ program was supposed to do making real jobs in fishing and value added processing to get a real job? Does that make any sense to you because it sure doesn't make any sense at all to me.

Anonymous said...

Interesting and thoughtful comments by all on this NSEDC posting and the June 21 posting regarding BBEDC. What are your thoughts on BBRSDA ??

Anonymous said...

I don't know much about BBRSDA. It looks like there has been some turnover on the board so maybe they have fair board of directors elections unlike the CDQ groups.

The idea behind RSDAs is a good one. Some Norton Sound fishermen tried to start an RSDA a few years back but nothing fisheries related can be done here without NSEDC's blessing and NSEDC would never go along with anything that it couldn't control completely so the RSDA effort fizzled.

It is an irony of biblical proportions that currently the greatest impediment to self-sustaining fisheries related economic development in Norton Sound is the program Ted Stevens created for the stated purpose of promoting and capitalizing self-sustaining fisheries related economic development in western Alaska.

What we don't know is if that unfortunate result was the hidden agenda from the beginning or was it an unintended consequence of the government's failure to give a sh-t about the poor people in rural Alaska.

Thanks in large part to CDQ program political support for the pollock trawl industry we've lost the king salmon runs in the Yukon and Kuskokwim Rivers and in Norton Sound. All we got in return was this crappy tee shirt that says Pollock Provides and a subsidized herring roe fishery worth $11k gross. Yee Haw, it don't get much better than this. Thanks a bunch Uncle Ted.

Anonymous said...

Is that you again Tim?

Anonymous said...

According to A..mous above, there is only one man, one man with reasonable comments and opinions about the CDQ program. A..mous is a blogger stalker.

I'm advocating for the 20 year REVIEW of the CDQ, how about you, A..mous?

Twenty years in 2012. Six months from now. Coming fast.