FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Gordon Helm
Commercial fishermen brought 678.3 million pounds of fish, worth $140.8 million, to the port of Dutch Harbor-Unalaska, Alaska, in 1999 -- making it the port with both the highest volume and greatest dollar value of fish landings in the country, the Commerce Department's National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced today.
Officials at NOAA's National Marine Fisheries Service said the port of Dutch Harbor-Unalaska netted the top landings slot for the 12th straight year - with an increase of 81.2 million pounds over 1998 landings. Meanwhile, Empire-Venice, La., was ranked as the number two port for the quantity of landings in 1999.
The value of landings at Dutch Harbor-Unalaska was $140.8 million, an increase of $30.8 million from the 1998 value. New Bedford, Mass. was second with landings valued at $129.9 million - an increase of $36.4 million, while the Kodiak, Alaska catch value was third at $100.8 million in 1999.
Part of the increase in 1999 landings at Dutch Harbor-Unalaska was due to an increase in walleye pollock quotas. In addition to the increased pollock landings, fishermen also landed more flatfish, halibut and salmon. Halibut and crab prices were high in 1999 and these two species accounted for most of the increased value of 1999 Dutch Harbor-Unalaska landings.
The large increase in value of New Bedford landings was principally due to sea scallops whose landings value increased from about $36 million in 1998 to almost $70 million in 1999.
The record landings for quantity was 848.2 million pounds in Los Angeles, Calif. in 1960 and record for value was $224.1 million in Dutch Harbor-Unalaska, Alaska in 1994. The top 10 leading U.S. ports in volume and value of fish and shellfish landed in 1998 and 1999 are:
Note: To avoid disclosure of private enterprise, certain ports have not been Included
A complete list of commercial fishery landings and value at 50 major U.S. ports for 1998 - 1999 is available at http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/news_releases_at_nmfs.htm or by fax upon request.