Processors plan to purchase 52M Bristol Bay salmon in 2022

Sockeye salmon school in a small Bristol Bay creek in the summer of 2018. Photo courtesy of Mary Catharine Martin

Commercial salmon processors have advised the Alaska Department of Fish and Game via the 2022 preseason processor capacity survey that they are ready to purchase 52 million fish in 2022, with a daily processing capacity of 3 million salmon.

According to a preseason run forecast released in November by ADF&G an estimated 60 million fish will be available to harvest this summer.

The intended purchases would be an increase of 10 million fish, or 25%, since the last survey in 2019.

Five processors account for 96% of this increase. Three are established operations that increased capacity by 20% to 30% each; the other two were new to the survey in 2019 and report increased capacity of 5% each.

Ten companies advised ADF&G that they intend to provide tenders in Bristol Bay, with a total holding capacity of 9 million fish. Three of these companies will also provide long haul tenders in 2022 delivering to at least four locations outside of Bristol Bay. The daily capacity of the Bristol Bay long haul tender fleet is 650,000 fish.