Last week, we were lucky enough to take some of our customers and team here at Pierless Fish to tour one of our major suppliers. Located in southern New Jersey on Long Beach Island, Viking Village is an active dock with boats working with many different types of species and gear here on the East Coast. We were able to see the F/V Elizabeth packing out 100% dry sea scallops and tour the scalloper F/V Ms Manya with captain Pete Dolan. We were also able to speak with captain and owner Mike Johnson of the F/V Sea Farmer, a pelagic longliner preparing for a 6-day trip at sea fishing for primarily swordfish and tuna. Viking Village is also home to other pelagic longliners, many day-trip gillnet boats, and more scallopers, both multi-day and 1-day trip boats. A tour of the facility was provided by Ernie Panacek and other members of their staff, showing us details on grading tuna and scallops, as well as ice production and logistics. A fun, educational experience for everyone, we hope to visit again soon. See some photos of our day:
Touring the F/V Ms Manya
Captain Pete Dolan showing us the pilothouse of the F/V Ms Manya
Packing out scallops from the F/V Elizabeth
Grading scallops for size and quality
Speaking with owner/captain Mike Johnson of the F/V Sea Farmer
As part of our commitment to incorporating environmentally friendly processes into our business, we now compact our styrofoam so it's able to be recycled. This new machine will be compacting styrofoam that comes into our receiving department, later to be recycled into new material for new uses.
This photo was taken Monday, and below, you can see what all that looks like now. This before and after comparison shows all the styrofoam we've compacted with our new machine this week, now ready to be recycled. Densified styrofoam can be used to make a multitude of new materials, instead of sitting in a landfill for eternity since it isn't biodegradable. We're looking forward to other recycling projects in the future, so stay tuned for what's up next...
The name ‘sockeye’ is thought to have come from the tribal word ‘sukkai’, for ‘red fish,’ which is the color these salmon change to when spawning. Sockeye salmon are also known as blueback (in regards to their coloring for most of their lives, pictured above) or summer sockeye (when they are most plentiful). As a species of fish that is anadromous, sockeye salmon are born in freshwater rivers and lakes, they then migrate to saltwater in the open ocean. At the end of their life, they migrate back to the freshwater where they were born, to spawn.
As one of Alaska’s most important industries, policies for all species of salmon are extensively managed by field-based, biological research and analysis. Since the 1970’s, fishery management practices have been put in place to make harvesting all stocks of salmon sustainable, supporting tens of thousands of jobs for the state as well as significant economic activity.
One of the sources of our sockeye salmon is from the fishery located in Yakutat, Alaska. This small town is located in the south- eastern, coastal area of the state, facing the Gulf of Alaska. In this small town, with a population of about 700 people, the majority of the inhabitants are involved in the commercial salmon fishery, mainly for sockeye. Fishermen use gillnet and seines primarily, though a small hydraulic longline can also be used, a version of hook and line, sometimes referred to as a “hook boat.” The largest sockeye salmon fishery, Bristol Bay, is located northwest of Yukatat. Located farther south along the coast is Sitka, Alaska, another source for our salmon.
Of all the Pacific salmon, sockeye is second in fat content only to the chinook, or king salmon, and has beautiful, bright orange-red meat. It is a smaller fish compared to the chinook, many times coming in less than ten pounds, and the meat is firm, rich and flavorful.