Wild Alaska Seafood - An Overview
The wilderness of Alaska and its cool, clear coastal and inland waters are home to some of the world’s best seafood.
Fish of all varieties abound in its three million lakes, 34,000 miles of coastline and 3,000 rivers. It is here that five different types of wild salmon – king, sockeye, keta, coho and pink – premium black cod, king crab and pollock thrive and mature at a natural pace.
Hot topic – sustainability
For over 50 years, Alaska has been a world leader in sustainability and is managed for the protection against habitat damage and pollution. Daily fish counts and advanced fishing techniques mean that there are no species that have ever been overfished and fish stocks are constantly replenished for future generations to benefit.
Fish from Alaska are in peak condition, wild and unadulterated. Living in a clean environment, they are harvested by fisherman who have a long heritage, respect the surroundings they live in and the bounty it provides.
Every aspect of Alaska’s fisheries has been strictly regulated, closely monitored and rigidly enforced for nearly five decades and its management practices are considered to be a model of sustainability for the entire world.
It’s important to note that Alaska’s fisheries are dual certified with RFM (Alaska’s Responsible Fisheries Management) and both MSC (Marine Stewardship Council) recognising the sustainable credentials of the wild species.
The five types of wild Alaska salmon
- King salmon – is the largest and most superior salmon species. It is prized for its colour, high oil content, firm texture and succulent flavours.
- Sockeye salmon – the most vibrant of them all. It is widely known for its distinctive red flesh and rich colour.
- Coho – boasts an orange-red flesh, firm texture and delicate flavour.
- Keta – is mild in flavour and has a firm pink texture, which works well particularly for grilling and roasting.
- Pink – is the smallest, yet most abundant of the five species. It is light and delicate in flavour.
What you need to know about Alaska pollock
Genuine Alaska pollock is a member of the cod family sharing many of its attributes. By volume, it is the second largest fishery in the world producing approximately 1.15 million tons per year since 1977.
It is considered to be the highest quality whitefish available for value-added seafood products. Once frozen within four hours of being caught, the eating characteristics of Alaska pollock is preserved, retaining its colour, aroma, flavour and texture. When cooked to perfection, the tender white fillet should flake beautifully.
Hot topic – wastage
We understand that creating profitable menus that provide choice, value and excitement for customers in the seafood sector can be a challenge, especially when combined with fluctuating table covers and high customer expectations for menu variety.
The case is so often that fresh seafood prepared in advance of service will be not be used thus resulting in preventable waste. So, what’s the solution?
By using seafood sourced from Alaskan waters, chefs can cook seafood directly from frozen. The fishing techniques employed stipulate that seafood has to be frozen within hours of being caught, immediately preserving the quality of fish. Therefore, without compromising on quality, chefs can cook for the exact number of covers required, avoiding preventable waste and increasing profitability for the restaurant. Frozen fish can be cooked using all the traditional methods including frying, steaming, baking and grilling and only needs a few extra minutes in preparation and cooking.