Alaska 2011 Salmon Harvest Estimated at $603 Million

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The Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) has compiled its preliminary estimate of the exvessel value of the 2011 Alaska commercial salmon harvest. At $603 million, the 2011 harvest currently ranks as the third most valuable harvest since 1975, behind the 1988 and 2010 harvests respectively. Analysts expect the 2011 harvest will surpass the 2010 harvest in value, after final price per pound information is received next spring from processors, buyers, and direct marketers.

While the 176 million salmon harvested in 2011—ninth largest since 1960—fell short of the 203 million predicted, high prices for all species, especially pink and chum salmon, pushed the value of the harvest to an extraordinary level. The pink salmon harvest, valued at over $170 million, set an all time record; chum salmon fetched $93 million, the third highest value ever recorded; sockeye salmon were worth almost $296 million, a respectable sixth place among historic sockeye harvests. Chinook and coho harvests, at $20 and $23 million, fell more toward the middle of their historic ranges.

Regionally, Southeast Alaska took first place with the most valuable salmon harvest in the state, worth over $203 million: $92 million from pink salmon and $65 million from chum salmon. Bristol Bay, usually the most valuable salmon fishery in the state, came in second with a harvest worth $137 million, and Prince William Sound took third with a harvest worth $101 million, mostly from pink and sockeye salmon. Chignik and Cook Inlet also had unusually valuable fisheries, resulting from strong sockeye returns to those areas.

A table with information on harvests, average weights, and prices by species for each management area, can be found at: .


Retired2hunt's picture

  Wow!!!  19,000 Chinook


Wow!!!  19,000 Chinook Salmon caught in the Prince William Sound and the average weight of these fish was nearly 20 pounds - incredible!!!  And at over $5.00 a pound that is approximately $106.oo a fish - wow!  Yes, I would love to hook one of these on regular fishing tackle... and then cook that very nice fish on the BBQ that same evening!  My mouth is watering just thinking about it.  Well with the harvest in dollar value being the 3rd best in the past 36 years I think the salmon price per pound this year will be higher than what we previously paid.  It appears the overall numbers of fish expected to be caught fell short about 15% to estimate which may mean the populations are not what was expected - it seems based on the numbers. 



hunter25's picture

It really boggles my mind

It really boggles my mind when they start outting numbers like that up. I know they watch it close to prevent over harvest but it doesn't seem possible to catch that many year after year. Obviously they know what they are doing as the records show similar results overall for decades now. I've only caught one salmon in my life but would love to get up there and go after a few myself with ahook and line. SOme halibut fishing would be great as well.