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Alaska Salmon Harvest Breaks Record in 2013

Alaska saw its largest salmon harvest ever in 2013, with more than 272 million fish caught. The huge harvest was powered by an incredible number of pink salmon, Alaska’s smallest and most abundant salmon species. The 219 million pink salmon comprised more than 80 percent of the total harvest.

JUNEAU, Alaska (ASMI) — 2013 was a year for the record books, with Alaska seeing the largest salmon harvest ever with more than 272 million fish caught in total. The huge harvest was powered by an incredible number of pink salmon, Alaska’s smallest and most abundant salmon species. The 219 million pink salmon comprised more than 80% of the total harvest and surpassed the Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADFG) pre-season forecast for all five salmon species combined.  This landmark season is valued at $691.1 million, second only to the 1988 harvest worth $724 million.

Known for their mild flavor, tender texture, and rosy pink flesh, much of Alaska pink salmon is found in shelf-stable canned, pouched and frozen forms. This convenient and affordable pantry staple serves as the foundation for classic recipes such as croquettes, salmon burgers, soups and chowders, casseroles, salads, and more. Given the huge Alaska harvest, now is an excellent time to incorporate pink salmon into meal planning. Alaska pink salmon are also excellent grilled, roasted, and paired with sauce. 

Canned salmon has a long heritage in Alaska. Dating back to canneries in the late 19thcentury, Alaska salmon serves as the primary economic backbone of dozens of communities across the state. Passed down from generation to generation, Alaskans consider fishing more than just a job—it’s a way of life. In fact, seafood resources are considered so precious that their sustainable management is mandated by the Alaska constitution.

“We’re proud of the heritage of our salmon fisheries and our commitment to their sustainability. This year’s record-breaking harvest was especially exciting, and we’re hoping to spread the word about the excellent taste and versatility of Alaska pink salmon,” said Tyson Fick, ASMI Communications Director. “Pink salmon is the most affordable wild salmon species available and many consumers prefer its mild flavor.”

In addition to delicious flavor, wild Alaska pink salmon offers numerous health benefits, as they are an excellent source of protein, omega-3s, calcium, selenium, phosphorous, and potassium. Pink salmon makes a wonderful addition to the menus of health-conscious home cooks. With the American Heart Association and the FDA recommending that everyone enjoy two servings of seafood per week, and with only 1 in 5 American adults and 1 in 10 American children meeting that recommendation, Alaska pink salmon are an easy, family-friendly way to eat more healthy seafood.

Wild and sustainable Alaska pink salmon can be found at retailers across the country in the canned seafood aisle, frozen seafood section, or at the seafood counter. Ask a seafood counter clerk if you can’t find the pink salmon product you’re looking for. To view delicious recipes and more information about the Alaska seafood story, visit and “like” Alaska Seafood on Facebook.

About Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute

ASMI is a public-private partnership between the State of Alaska and the Alaska seafood industry, established to foster economic development. ASMI functions as a brand manager of the Alaska Seafood family of brands in 21 countries throughout Europe, Asia, and South America and also maintains a prominent marketing program in the US. ASMI works to raise the value of Alaska’s seafood product portfolio through partnerships with retail grocers, foodservice distributors, restaurant chains, foodservice operators, universities, culinary schools, and the media.

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