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Copper River salmon season opened on Monday, May 15th with an expectation of 1.6 million wild sockeye salmon, approximately 9% under the ten-year average. This year we are expecting 1-1.5 lb. larger sockeye because the better food supply they found at sea. While the season is off to a good, albeit slow, start, now is the perfect time to review your transportation plans and make sure your frozen, fresh, and chilled cargo is protected on its journey. 

Demand has not really improved year over year because the retail prices have started at last year levels.  That balances with the first arrivals being slow. Once we see some market pressure for the later openings, that will start to bring prices down, demand will increase.

 For Bristol Bay, the colder water means there is still snow that hasn’t melted, leaving the river levels lower, and slowing the opening population. In warmer waters, salmon must travel farther to find food. With the warmer water driving up their metabolic needs, they burn through calories faster, ending up smaller, thinner and less robust than in years with colder waters. 

As the season continues, weather changes can impact the number of fish, an issue CFI will make sure to mention as we move closer to July. Our food supply is tightly woven into our weather patterns, an issue that’s evident in seafood. 

At CFI, salmon season requires a deft approach to cold chain handling. Whether you’re taking the first fish or moving a season long shipment that requires regular refrigeration, you can count on our decades of experience to ensure your salmon stays safe. Our patented overpack, CoolSkys, can protect your cargo from temperature issues that come from waiting on a tarmac for a flight. By using refracted light, the heat is scattered away from the cargo, minimizing temperature abuse from direct sunlight.  Coolskys can be used on the box level for bulk airline shipments, or on skids for wide bodies.

As the largest perishables forwarder in the world, CFI should be your partner in salmon this year. Avoid spoilage, delays and doubts, contact your CFI representative today to learn more about our services.