Hook-and-line-caught salmon from Haines commercial fisherman were in the spotlight this month when their hand-trolled catch was named in the top 10 seafood delivery services in a Good Housekeeping web article.
Shoreline Wild Salmon, co-owned by resident Marie Rose Fudge, scored ninth on the list from over 40 popular seafood and meat delivery services across the nation.
“What was exciting for us is that a lot of the businesses listed on there were really huge companies and we’re quite small in comparison,” Fudge said.
Two of Shoreline Wild Salmon’s fishing boats are operated by Haines locals. The F/VHardy fishing vessel captained by Randy Konrad and his partner Christine Nagy, as well as the Standy captained by Scott Visscher, have been fishing for Shoreline Wild Salmon for several years.
Each fisherman takes “really pristine care of each fish they catch,” Fudge said, a quality that makes Shoreline stand out from its competitors. Shoreline’s fish are processed in Pelican, Alaska, a town that boasts being “closest to the fish.”
“The fish are caught by hand,” Visscher, who has been hand-trolling for 40 years, said. “They get bled immediately, cleaned, rinsed and iced all in short order. Basically, when they come into Shoreline’s buying station the fish are really good quality. From there they take it and it goes right over to the processor in Pelican. It’s pretty unique.”
Shoreline Wild Salmon was praised for “fishing the old school way” with a line and hook, also known as “trolling.”
“We’re trying to keep the environment in mind while we are in the process,” Fudge said.
The judges also applauded the business’s generous portions, option to make salmon burgers, and recyclable and compostable packaging. Shoreline Wild Salmon uses 100% recyclable and compostable packaging, including a backyard-compostable styrofoam alternative made from corn starch.
In fact, all the businesses named in the top 10 claimed recyclable or compostable packaging, something Fudge said was “really cool to see becoming a norm.”
Shoreline Wild Salmon offers cases of king, coho and smoked salmon, as well as halibut and lingcod. Monthly subscription boxes are also a popular choice for Shoreline customers.
The company does most of their business to customers in the Lower 48, but is beginning to expand to retailers across Southeast Alaska. Mountain Market in Haines and Rainbow Foods in Juneau shelf Shoreline Wild Salmon products. A “handful of locals” also send Shoreline Wild Salmon to friends and relatives in the Lower 48, especially around the holidays, Fudge said.
As the company gears up for the next season, Fudge said she hopes this award will boost sales for the business.
“We’re not like the other big businesses,” Fudge said. “We don’t have these monstrous advertising budgets. We’re a small grassroots company. Being published on a list like this that comes from a really credible source is really exciting. Especially considering we just kicked off our online ordering two years ago.”
Shoreline Wild Salmon began as a grassroots business in Fudge’s home state of Michigan, and still feeds a largely midwestern customer base. Shoreline Wild Salmon supplies to over 60 grocery stores and restaurants in Michigan, as well as a handful of stores in Ohio, Minnesota, and New Mexico.