Laine Welch

Laine Welch of Kodiak has been covering news of Alaska’s seafood industry for print and broadcast since 1991. Visit her website at

Fish Factor: Copper River salmon harvest set to begin May 17

Alaska’s 2021 salmon officially starts on Monday, May 17 with a 12-hour opener for reds and kings at the Copper River.
Fishing vessels docked in Cordova Harbor. (Sept. 12, 2019) Photo by Zachary Snowdon Smith/The Cordova Times

Fish Factor: State’s commercial fisheries division budget looks secure

The budget for Alaska’s commercial fisheries division is facing no cuts for the upcoming fiscal year, assuming the current numbers make it through the Legislature.

Fish Factor: Study would measure threat to salmon from road runoff

Are toxins from road runoff a threat to salmon in Anchorage’s most popular fishing streams? A GoFundMe campaign has been launched so Alaskans can chip in to find out.

Fish Factor: Demand for snow crab is ‘insatiable’

“Insatiable” is the word being used to describe the demand for snow crab as the world’s largest fishery got underway on April 5 in Eastern Canada. And while more snow crab will be available this year, buyers expect a tight supply.

Fish Factor: Seafarers International Union aims to hire displaced Alaska harvesters

Alaska fishermen displaced by the COVID pandemic are being recruited for seafaring jobs aboard U.S. cargo barges; tankers; towboats; military support vessels; research and cruise ships; and more.

Fish Factor: Pandemic has produced record sales for Alaska’s canned salmon

It’s “back to the future” for Alaska canned salmon as more Americans choose it for its health benefits and as an easy-to-use ingredient for sandwiches, salads and more.

Fish Factor: Halibut prices rise for first of the season fish

Halibut prices for Alaska fishermen for 2021 started out significantly higher than last year, despite sluggish demand and transportation logjams in some regions.

Fish Factor: Salmon season 2021 projected to be a big haul

Alaska’s salmon harvest for 2021 is projected to be a big one with total catches producing a haul that could be 61% higher than last year, due mostly to an expected surge of pinks.

Fish Factor: ASMI weighs in on pandemic costs to fisheries

Processors are being asked about financial losses due to COVID mitigation efforts, plant closures and employment changes, as well as their expectations for costs and employment levels in 2021.

Fish Factor: Increase in catch limits comes as Pacific halibut fishery opens

The Pacific halibut fishery opened on March 6 and increased catch limits, combined with a cautiously optimistic outlook for the near future, have fanned interest in buying shares of the popular fish.



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