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Trident Seafoods to Delay Unalaska Processing Plant Investments through 2024

  (UNITED STATES, 8/16/2023)

Remains Confident in the Alaska Seafood Industry

Global market conditions and record harvests drive decisions to delay – but not cancel – Trident's plans to build its plant of the future in Alaska.

Source: KUCB

Trident Seafoods announced today that the company has reevaluated its 2024 plans to begin construction of a new processing plant in Unalaska, Alaska. The decision will delay breaking ground on the new plant until 2025. With a projected three-year build plan, the new timeline means the plant would be operational no sooner than 2028.

This decision reflects an unprecedented confluence of high inventory levels, low consumer demand, and aggressive price competition in global markets. These forces have driven prices down rapidly and across species—all while high global inflation and rising interest rates are driving up operating costs.

"I've been in the industry a long time and I've never seen markets like this," said Trident CEO, Joe Bundrant. "The rate and pace at which markets are collapsing across our key species is staggering. Not only are global inventories and operating costs high, but demand is low, and some are selling at or below cost just to generate cash."

Trident was founded in 1973 by Chuck Bundrant and the company built its reputation on its commitment and service to independent harvesters. "Trident has a long history of managing through good times and bad to return value to all our stakeholders while generating the cash needed to invest in the future. Our fishermen need a fair return on their investment to sustain a healthy harvesting sector. We depend on them as much as they depend on us," added Bundrant.

"Our current plant in Akutan has served everyone well since the 1980s," said Trident Senior Vice President of Alaska Operations, Jeff Welbourn. "Wear and tear over the years and a remote and harsh environment make maintaining the plant for the long run no longer feasible. We've designed a next-generation processing plant to deliver the operating efficiencies and value our fishermen and markets deserve from Alaska's world-class fisheries." The new plant will be in Captain's Bay, Unalaska, and will feature state-of-the-art equipment and processing practices that will drive the company closer to its zero-waste ambition and deliver the greatest value from every fish.

"We are working closely with the village of Akutan to soften the impact of Trident's eventual move to Unalaska," said Executive Vice President of Public Affairs, Stefanie Moreland. "Delaying the project start date does not change our long-term plan."

Trident points to a strong record of globally leading fishery management practices in the Alaska region as the fundamental reason why the company remains committed to continued investment in Alaska for decades to come. However, in the current global market Alaska's competitive advantages are being overwhelmed.

"Trident has moved quickly to adapt to deteriorating market conditions, including fast-tracking initiatives that trim costs and drive more demand for wild Alaska seafood, but we also need swift action from the federal government to provide U.S. seafood producers fair and open or reciprocal access to seafood markets around the world.," added Moreland. "Current U.S. trade policy and domestic programs for seafood are failing domestic producers at this critical time. We cannot continue investing in the improvements necessary to modernize our sector when foreign supply chains with low regulatory standards and no meaningful oversight have equal or better positioning with respect to the tariff and non-tariff market barriers we face in global markets."

Source: PR News 

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Address: 5303 Shilshole Ave. N.W.
City: Seattle
State/ZIP: Washington (98107-4000)
Country: United States
Phone: +1 206 783 3818
Fax: +1 206 782 7195
E-Mail: [email protected]
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