Innovation is always international. In the case of Seattle’s Blue North Fisheries, to get the best boat they possibly could, they turned to Norwegian boat designer Skipstekniask AS, for a freezer-longliner vessel that will be built at Dakota Creek Industries, Inc. in Anacortes, which will be used in Alaskan waters and its cargo sold internationally.
Rising demand for fish and rising uncertainty in the global supply have increased seafood prices; other trends have increased demand for greater efficiency in seafood fishing. The new vessel Blue North is building will combine both. The ship is capable of using up to 90% of its target catch, cod, and has a “moon pool” which allows workers to retrieve the 10-mile-long fishing lines without being exposed to the elements, which makes the process safer, and makes it easier for the workers to safely release unsought catch. In older ships, the cod utilization has hovered around the 60% mark, so this decreases dumping of unsaleable fish parts as well as increasing revenue for the fishery. In addition, the ship’s efficiencies are unprecedented – the system is anticipated to cut fuel costs by 30% over conventional designs, for example.
Blue North is not the only local fishery to be building new boats; the aging fleets and the increased interest and investment in Pacific Northwest seafood have meant that Tacoma’s J.M. Martinac Shipbuilding Company and Vigor Industrial, among others, are also engaged in new vessel projects.