Dock prices determine fishermen’s observer coverage fees

Here are the fish prices that determine the fees paid by AK fishermen to cover the costs of management, enforcement and observers.

by | January 10, 2024

Here are the values used for 2024 halibut, sablefish and groundfish

Each year NOAA Fisheries recovers fees to cover the costs directly related to management, data collection and enforcement for fisheries that are included in Limited Access Privilege (LAP) programs.

In Alaska, the fee is based on standard prices per pound paid for landings of halibut, sablefish and Bering Sea crab. Starting in 2016, NOAA increased its collection of fees to include four groundfish management programs : American Fisheries Act, Aleutian Islands pollock, Amendment 80 and Western Alaska CDQ.

For 2024, the observer coverage fee is equal to 1.65%.

The Federal Register states: “Ex-vessel value is determined by multiplying the standard price for groundfish by the round weight equivalent for each species, gear, and port combination, and the standard price for halibut by the headed and gutted weight equivalent. Standard prices are determined by aggregating prices by species, gear, and area grouping to arrive at an average price per pound for each grouping.”

Halibut, sablefish prices by Alaska port

For Pacific halibut, the average standard dock price in 2023 for halibut was $5.73 and $1.78 for sablefish.

Dock prices for pollock, flounders, rockfish and more

For Alaska’s groundfish fisheries, the 1.65% observer fee for 2024 is based on volumes and values from 2020, 2021, and 2022.

The ex-vessel value used for pollock is $0.14; cod is $0.30; octopus is $0.57, and $0.09 for flathead sole.

Find standard prices paid for all groundfish by Alaska port HERE –– (scroll down)

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About Laine

Laine Welch has covered the Alaska fish beat for print and radio since 1988. She also has worked “behind the counter” at retail and wholesale seafood companies in Kodiak and on Cape Cod.


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