In Alaska, the passing of winter into spring ismeasured by fishing nets being mended and boats readied for the much-celebrated opening ofthe Copper River wild salmon season. This annual event has been inspiring fishermen, chefs, and salmon lovers for generations, and this year these delicious fish will be easier than ever tofind with the new Copper River Salmon Locator App.
The Copper River, tracing 300-miles of rugged Alaska wilderness, is one of the longest and most challenging salmon migrations in the world. The arduous journey made by Copper River King and Sockeye salmon requires these magnificent fish to carry extra stores of fat, rich in healthy Omega 3s, giving each salmon the superb flavor and texture prized by everyone from home cooks to world-class chefs.
The 2012 season will kick off on Thursday, May 17, with the first Copper River King and Sockeye salmon arriving at restaurants and markets for the weekend.
"Copper River Salmon comes from an untouched environment that keeps producing the finest salmon in the world," says Brian Rutzer, who has been fishing the Copper River for 20 years onboard his 32-foot boat, the Controller Bay.
For Rutzer, like the 540 other members of the fleet, fishing is away of life that harvests one of nature’s healthiest wild foods and feeds a hunger for adventure, independence, and vast open spaces.
Copper River King, the largest and most sought after of all Pacific salmon species, run through the end of June. Sockeye, which make up the heart of the Copper River commercial salmon harvest, run through the end of July. The naturally high oil content, brilliant color, and firm texture make Copper River salmon perfect for preparations and pairings that let its succulent flavor shine through.
Like all seafood from Alaska, Copper River salmon are always wild, natural, and sustainable.
Following stronger than anticipated King and Sockeye harvests in 2011, this year’s Copper River forecast is for a harvest of 20,000 Kings and 1.43 million Sockeye.
The biggest question often asked by Copper River salmon fans is, “where can I find it near me?” Now, with the new Copper River Salmon Locator App, finding Copper River Salmon at restaurants and markets has never been easier. Consumers, restaurants, and retailers can also add locations carrying Copper River Salmon to the App database at www.findcopperriver.org.