The Culture and Beauty of Patagonia

In remote areas of Chilean Patagonia the sprawling mountain ranges, countryside, and bright blue water appear untouched by mankind.  Verlasso Salmon strives to preserve this natural beauty and work with the community to maintain a sustainable fishery for future generations.   Both Catanese Classic Seafood and Verlasso Salmon collaborate with Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch to innovate their practices and provide sustainable choices to consumers.  In fact, Verlasso Salmon was the first ocean-raised Atlantic salmon to receive a yellow label/Good Alternative rating by Seafood Watch.  Consumers seeking a quality product can trust their choice in Verlasso because they never use hormones or antibiotics to grow or raise their fish.  To protect the environment, they do not use copper anti-foulants in their nets or enclosures or organophosphates on their farms.  Verlasso first arrived on the scene with their ability to reduce the amount of feeder fish and water to produce a quality salmon.  Today they have made sustainable innovations throughout their entire operation to ensure the preservation of the environment and culture in the region surrounding their farms.

Visiting the Origin of Verlasso Salmon

In early November, Catanese Classic Seafood and Heinen’s Grocery Store sent representatives on a once-in-a-lifetime journey to visit the Verlasso Salmon farms in Chilean Patagonia.  Verlasso Salmon, known for its innovation in sustainable farming practices, has made its home in Patagonia by adapting to and preserving the environment and traditional culture of this pristine region.  Over the next week we will share this experience and provide insight into the future of farming in the salmon business.  At home, consumers who desire the clean, fresh taste of Verlasso Salmon, can purchase it at any Heinen’s Grocery Store or at Catanese Classic Seafood.  From the bright blue water of the Pacific Ocean to the astonishing magnitude of the Andes Mountains, this region offers countless reminders that working in harmony with the natural world is a top priority.

Day 1:  The 20 hour trek spanned from Cleveland, OH –> Miami, FL –> Santiago, Chile before an afternoon landing in Puerto Mont. After meeting with the team at Verlasso, dinner was prepared by Restaurant Las Tranqueras in Puerto Varas.

Day 2:  To see the true origin of the Verlasso Salmon, the group took a morning trip to the hatchery in a small town outside of Puerto Montt.

From The Lake To The Table: Cleveland’s Seafood Season

Fall is the time for sport anglers to fill their coolers with Lake Erie’s yellow perch. The same holds true for commercial fishing enterprises like Szuch Fisheries.

“When you throw away fish like that, you got some good fishing going,” Holly Szuch said. “Right now in the fall, we usually fish here in Cleveland.”

Holly and her husband own the operation. Where they’re catching is a secret, but on this day, their 42-foot vessel, “The Whip,” found the fish, and lots of them: 8,000 pounds to be exact.

They unload their haul of yellow perch here at Catanese Classic Seafood in the Flats. These fish have a special designation.

“In 2015, we got our fish MSE certified as a sustainable resource,” Holly said. “Lake Erie is the first lake in the US to get this certification.”

The fish go straight to the processing room where they are scaled, filleted, and packed for sale at local restaurants, like Alley Cat Oyster House, where chef Andy Dombrowski serves up hundreds of perch dinners a week.

“One of the best thing about being a chef is getting fresh, local ingredients,” Dombrowski said. “You cant get anything better than when the boats come in and we get perch that afternoon.”

And that freshness gets passed along to you, either in a restaurant, or in the seafood case of your favorite grocery store.

“That makes me proud to hear people appreciate what I do for a living, just like a farmer,” Holly said.

Plowing the waters of Lake Erie to harvest gold, taking it from lake to table.

© 2017 WKYC-TV

Media Credit: WKYC News Cleveland, Carl Bachtel

Seafood Update – 9/15/17

This Just In…

As I’m sure you know, Miami continues to struggle to get back to operational. We expect the flow of fish to start arriving in Miami Thursday and Friday (21st & 22nd). There will be many different industries looking to do the same thing. The actual amount of fish arriving into Miami might be less than expected. Grouper, Snapper and other southern species will be limited through next week. Many vendors are re-routing into NYC, Boston and LA. There is only so much cargo and airspace available overall, putting pressure on regular shipments into those ports. Due to this, we are even seeing delays of fish arriving from Alaska.

  • Coho landings have improved; We expect a steady flow of fish arriving over the next 2-3 weeks before the fishery winds down.
  • Columbia River is open for King Salmon and landings have improved in that fishery as well. The run should also last 2-3 weeks.
  • Pacific Dover Sole is being targeted now that Black Cod is finished in Canada, Dover should be good to go, weather permitting, until December 1st.
  • Yellow Perch are coming in strong and is expected to keep at this pace through October. Fall fish are fat and beautiful.
  • Walleye will be short until October 1st. We expect dribs and drabs until then. Walleye should be good until Thanksgiving.
  • Golden Trout will be short for the next 2 months and possibly until January.
  • Swordfish supply is good as fish are n ow showing in the North Atlantic. It hasn’t opened fully yet, but should be good to go until late October.
  • Barramundi is being diverted through NYC and into Boston to meet a truck to Cleveland. It’s like pulling a rabbit out of the hat but the trick has worked so far thanks to the efforts of all involved.
  • Cobia will be short until Miami is back to normal operation. Give it a couple of weeks before expecting much Cobia.


Wild Salmon Update – 6/5/17

As of June 1st many fishing areas have opened for Wild Salmon. The weather hasn’t cooperated as hoped and landing have been light. King have been almost non-existent from anywhere but the Copper River. This goes against projections. Kings were thought to be very light but our reports from our favorite Copper River fisherman says otherwise. They have landed more Kings so far this year than most of the seasons total of the last 2 years. This, of course, is one fisherman’s findings. Not everybody is having that kind of luck but we do see more Copper River kings than we expected. The hope is this translates to a better overall King Salmon catch than we have seen in the past few years. Only time will tell. We expect landings from the many open areas to increase production volume and lower prices We feel the week leading to Father’s Day will be a great time to promote Wild Alaskan Salmon.

Seafood Update – 5/22/17

This Just In…

Copper River Salmon season opened this past Thursday the 18th. Landings were light but encouraging. We will have Copper River Sockeye Salmon available this week. Fish will arrive to us over the weekend for early week sales. The next opening on the river will be announced Sunday the 21st. it will be either a 12 hour opening on Monday 22nd or Thursday 25th. Escapement up river will determine the date of the opening.

This year Wild Salmon is expected to be down from the past 3 years. Records have been set in the last 3 years and as cycles go this will be more of a return to normal numbers of the past 5 to 10 years.

King Salmon will be very limited this year as the species is under stress. Conservation is being put into effect for this years’ fisheries. Alaskan Wild Life officials are trying to keep fishermen tracked on Sockeye and Coho landings and to avoid catching Kings. So expect to see Sockeye with limited Kings all summer.

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