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F/V Hannah Inaugural Voyage to Bristol Bay

Northline_Hannah-300x181Northline Seafoods has announced the inaugural voyage of its latest vessel, F/V HANNAH, setting sail from Bellingham’s Fairhaven Shipyard to Bristol Bay for the 2024 salmon fishing season. The one-of-a-kind platform was built specifically for the conditions in Bristol Bay.

“This is a dream come true,” said Northline Seafoods CEO Ben Blakey. “Seeing our vessel leave the Fairhaven Shipyard is a critical milestone for the Bristol Bay salmon industry and for Northline Seafoods. I am proud of our team and appreciative of all the people who helped us get here.”

The F/V HANNAH is a 400′ x 100′ barge that Northline describes as a “vertically integrated, all-in-one solution for buying, freezing, shipping, storing, and distributing wild Alaska salmon.” The vessel features the capacity to freeze up to one million pounds of salmon per day, managed by a production crew of twenty. In addition, it can freeze salmon to a core temperature of -30°F in under 2 hours, and the cold storage facilities can hold over ten million pounds of frozen salmon, while also accommodating 2.3 million pounds of fresh fish.

F/V HANNAH will be based in Bristol Bay for the 2024 Alaska salmon season. According to the company, the vessel will be stationed at Clarks Point in the Nushagak District, purchasing fish from all Bristol Bay fishing districts. When the season is over, the vessel will return to Bellingham to serve as a cold storage facility for the 2024 season’s catch. In the spring, the vessel will head back to Bristol Bay for the next salmon season.

Construction began at the Port of Bellingham in Washington in January 2023. The company announced that the vessel would be constructed using an existing barge hull, which was being towed from the Gulf of Mexico to Washington State. Northline Seafoods worked with Zachary Scott, a Seattle-based investment banking firm, to raise $62.5 million in capital for the development of F/V HANNAH. $40 million of the total was provided by a USDA-backed Food Supply Chain loan.

It is estimated that more than 100 Bristol Bay harvesters (the world’s largest sockeye salmon fishery) will deliver their catch to the F/V HANNAH.


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