JUNEAU, Alaska — Pink salmon are credited for causing Alaska’s largest salmon harvest ever.
The Juneau Empire reports preliminary 2013 figures from the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute count 272 million fish caught. Of those, 219 million were pink salmon, also known as humpbacks.
The salmon season last year was valued at an estimated $691 million. That’s second only to $724 million harvest of 1988.
State biologist David Harris says the pink salmon catch buoyed the 2013 numbers despite low figures for king salmon across the state.
Tyson Fick with the seafood marketing Institute says the hefty harvest will be a financial boost for fisherman and Alaska’s seafood industry as a whole.
Fick says product diversification has led to increased uses pink salmon, which is not only canned but is often frozen.