Seafood

Seafood

Large new mariculture projects
The public comment period closed March 1 on applications for new state mariculture sites including two large oyster farms in South- east Alaska. One is a proposal for a 182-acre farm by Sitka Sound Seafoods, an established seafood processor in Sitka. Another farm is proposed at a 127-acre site near Prince of Wales Island near Ketchikan. If approved and developed these are the largest oyster farms in the state. To date the largest farm is 26 acres. All are family-type operation. Sitka Sound’s proposal would not only be the largest but also the first operated by a company, in this case
a firm in the seafood business. The biggest obstacle facing development of a mariculture industry in Alaska has been achieving a large enough scale to get economies and to have financially-strong owners and operators involved, advocates for the industry argue. The state’s Mariculture Task Force, established three years ago, says the industry has potential to achieve $100 million in revenues in 20 years. Mariculture is the cultivation of marine life for food,

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