DATE:  June 4, 2001     NO: 01-63  

CONTACT: J. Pennelope Goforth  PHONE: (907) 269-4747 

Department of Labor and Workforce Development

News Release

Seafood processors now hiring

Salmon processing companies in Bristol Bay need over 300 workers by mid-June in Naknek, Pedersen Point, and Dillingham for the 2001 salmon season, the Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development announced today.

"We are sending anyone interested in working in the seafood industry to 
Bristol Bay," said Melody Dosier, a seafood employment specialist for the Department. "Remote plants in Naknek, Pedersen Point, Ekuk and Togiak provide round trip transportation and room and board for workers who complete their contracts and remain on the job through the end of the employer’s work season." 

The focus now is on Bristol Bay, where a temporary Seafood Employment Office in Naknek is operating from June 27 to July 17. This office promotes the Traveling Seafood Workforce 2001 Program to match workers with companies in other locations still processing salmon or other species in Alaska. After Bristol Bay, workers will be needed in Petersburg, Kake, Valdez, Yakutat, Kenai, Dutch Harbor, Uganik Bay, and other areas.

“Our facility employs a total of 125 people during peak salmon season, and hires local applicants whenever possible,” said Rusty Roessler, plant manager of Togiak Fisheries. Roessler is currently recruiting through the Labor Department and says he is optimistic that the Togiak area will have relatively good sockeye returns based on Fish and Game projections. He will recruit in Anchorage in person on June 14 at the Anchorage Midtown Job Center for 50 seafood processors. Togiak Fisheries processes salmon and is located in northwestern Bristol Bay. 

In addition to Bristol Bay, there are immediate openings for large numbers of seafood workers now through early to mid-September in Valdez and Cordova (80 openings), and Juneau (100 openings)

To combat the worker shortage, many companies are offering incentives such as end of season bonuses, travel vouchers, and housing discounts or rebates for those who complete their contracts.

Seafood job orientations are scheduled at the Anchorage Job Center, 3301 Eagle Street, Mondays through Fridays at 9:00 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. Interested workers should go directly to the orientation in the Seafood Unit or call the Anchorage Seafood Hotline at (907) 269-4770, EXT. 7, for daily-recorded updates.

Interested workers outside Anchorage are urged to contact their local Job Center Office or call the Alaska Department of Labor Seafood Employment Unit toll-free at 1-800-473-0688. For more information on current openings, go to the "Seafood Jobs in Alaska" web site and click on "Seafood Jobs."

To contact Rusty Roessler at Togiak Fisheries, call (907) 493-5331.

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