Coordinated through the Alaska Marine Conservation Council, the community-supported Tanner crab fishery touts sustainable management and catch methods that limit environmental impact.
“You’re buying direct from a fisherman but through a conservation group,” said Theresa Peterson, the Kodiak outreach coordinator for AMCC. A portion of the profit goes to support the conservation council’s goals.
Part of the selling point to seafood consumers is that the program, called Catch of the Season, is fished by small-boat fishermen who ensure the best handling methods to maintain high seafood quality.
AMCC also hopes the Catch of the Season will be a “catch” for Alaska restaurants, encouraging them to consider participating and giving discounts on large orders.
This is the second year for the program. Peterson said about 60 subscribers pre-purchased Tanners last year. The crab comes in 10- and 25-pound boxes.
“The program went fabulous last year,” she said.
Some threw parties when they received their boxes of crab and sent back pictures, she said. The program also enticed people who had never tried Kodiak Tanner crab to appreciate their sweet and rich flavor.
One important facet to the program is having the story of fishing families and fishermen accompany the boxes of crab, creating a personal connection to the product and Kodiak Island. Along with the personal story comes information about conservation efforts and the Tanner crab fishery. Favorite fishermen crab recipes are also included.
“People really appreciate having a sense of where their seafood is coming from and supporting costal community fishermen,” Peterson said.
The Tanner crab fishery doesn’t begin until Jan. 15, but orders for crab boxes can be made now through Jan. 13 with crab boxes ready for pick up about a week thereafter. The crab comes cooked and frozen in leg clusters.
Prices for the crab range from $150 for a 10-pound box to $350 for 25 pounds and can be ordered through the AMCC website at akmarine.org.
Contact Mirror writer Wes Hanna at email@example.com.