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A Wild Summer Starts with Alaska Salmon Season


The celebrated wild Alaska summer salmon harvest season begins Thursday, May 18, signaling the natural return of the region's most iconic fish through a thriving annual migration cycle that is ensured by Alaska's Constitutional pledge to sustain wild populations for generations to come. This year's harvest is forecasted by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game at more than 204 million salmon making this summer the perfect time to try all five species.

"Every year, hundreds of million Alaska salmon complete their homeward journey from the icy ocean waters of the North Pacific to Alaska's vast grid of rich rivers and streams," said Jeremy Woodrow, communications director, Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute (ASMI). "Alaska fishermen follow the best sustainability practices in the world, responsibly harvesting the fish for the world to enjoy and ensuring that Alaska salmon will always remain wild and sustainable. Later this summer, we will also celebrate the official Alaska Wild Salmon Day on August 10."

Wild Alaska sockeye, king, pink, keta and coho salmon supply nearly 95 percent of the wild salmon harvested in the U.S., meaning plenty of rich and succulent wild salmon for the summer grill. The cold water and natural environment help give wild Alaska salmon unmatched taste, nutrition and versatility that appeal to all palates and budgets, and can be enjoyed in a variety of ways:

  • Sockeye With its rich, traditional flavor and firm texture, sockeye salmon is one of the most popular species and is perfect for almost all preparation techniques, including grilling, broiling, sauting, roasting, poaching, steaming and smoking.
    Recipe suggestion: Balsamic Alaska Sockeye Salmon with Strawberries
  • King The largest of the five species, king salmon has a rich red flesh with high oil content lending itself to most cooking techniques. King salmon's succulent flavor can be easily enhanced with seafood seasonings and marinades.
    Recipe suggestion: Caribbean Jerk Alaska King Salmon and Spiked Pineapple Skewers
  • Pink The most abundant and affordable of the five Alaska species, pink salmon is known for its mild flavor and tender texture making it an excellent vehicle for sauces. Decreased cooking temperatures are recommended because of its naturally lower oil content.
    Recipe suggestion: Alaska Pink Salmon Tacos with Mango Salsa and Avocado Cream
  • Keta With a firmer texture and mild flavor, keta salmon is great for summer grilling, smoking or roasting. Like pink salmon, it is best to prepare keta at decreased cooking temperatures.
    Recipe suggestion: Curried Alaska Keta Salmon with Coconut Rice
  • Coho The second largest Alaska salmon species after king, coho is known for its orange-red flesh, delicate flavor and firm texture. Many consider coho the best salmon for grilling.
    Recipe suggestion: Planked Alaska Coho Salmon with Asian Glaze

In addition to fresh during the harvest season, Alaska salmon is available year-round frozen, canned and smoked. For more information and recipe ideas, visit, and follow Alaska Seafood on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest. Additional details on each Alaska salmon species, including nutritional values, harvesting methods and full recipes from Alaska Seafood can be found online in the Ultimate Guide to Wild Alaska Salmon.

About Alaska Seafood:
The Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute (ASMI) is a partnership of the State of Alaska and the Alaska seafood industry promoting the benefits of wild and sustainable Alaska seafood and offering seafood industry education. The seafood industry is Alaska's largest private sector employer with nearly 60 percent of all seafood and 90-95 percent of wild salmon harvested in the U.S. coming from Alaska. In addition to wild salmon, Alaska is known for its crab and whitefish varieties such as cod, sablefish, halibut, pollock, sole and rockfish available fresh or frozen year-round. Alaska has been dedicated to sustainable seafood for more than 50 years and is the only state with a constitution that mandates all seafood be managed under the sustained yield principle. Alaska has taken a leadership role in setting the global standard for precautionary resource management to protect fisheries and surrounding habitats for future generations and leading to an ever-replenishing supply of wild seafood for markets worldwide.

SOURCE Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute

A Wild Summer Starts with Alaska Salmon Season

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