Sunday, April 3, 2011

Pacific Whiting Fishermen Form Co-op

On the U.S. West Coast, the American offshore mothership pacific whiting fleet recently formed a cooperative to pool their federally allocated shares of whiting.   

Whiting, worth about $27 million to U.S. fishermen last year, is processed both at sea and at traditional land-based plants, where it is converted into fillets and surimi, the basis for imitation crab and similar products popular in Asia.

In the mothership fishery, fishermen deliver their fish at sea directly to mothership processors. The whiting fishery also supports a shore-based fleet that delivers its harvest to shore-based plants, and an at-sea catcher-processor fleet that both harvests and processes whiting at sea.

According to NOAA, the pacific whiting catcher-processor fleet has operated under a voluntary co-op since 1997.

Pacific whiting (or hake, Merluccius productus) comprises the largest fishery off the West Coast of North America.

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