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Nation’s Largest Sustainable Fishery Opens Sunday in Alaska

29 January 2013

US - The harvest season for Alaska pollock, the nation’s largest fishery, opened Sunday 20 January. The 2013 Alaska pollock Total Allowable Catch (TAC) for the Bering Sea/Aleutian Islands and Gulf of Alaska is 1,387,146 metric tons, 3.8 per cent higher than last year’s TAC of 1,335,944 metric tons.

Alaska pollock accounts for approximately 30 per cent of all US seafood landings by weight.

From energetic school cafeterias to bustling fast-casual cafes, Alaska pollock is a mainstay in breaded fish sticks, fish sandwiches, Alaska Surimi Seafood products, and more. In fact, this mild, versatile whitefish is one of the most common and well-loved seafood varieties in the country, even though it isn’t always specifically called out on menus. Delicious whether poached, baked, broiled, steamed, sautéed, or deep-fried, Alaska pollock is a versatile, healthy choice that is low in fat and high in protein and long-chain omega-3s. Visit for recipes and detailed nutrition information.

The Alaska pollock fishery is a model of sustainability for the world. Using mid-water trawls designed to minimize the effects on the marine environment, the Alaska pollock fishery is vigilant against overfishing and works hard to avoid accidental by-catch of other species. These efforts are monitored by the federal pollock observer program, which assigns scientists to all harvesting vessels and processing locations.

The annual Alaska pollock TAC is set by the North Pacific Fishery Management Council (NPFMC), which uses decades of survey information and the best research available to determine sustainable catch levels. This reliance on science is a hallmark of Alaska’s sustainable fisheries management system.

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