December 3, 2001

COMMUNITY CATCH

Fishing Companies Serve Up Seafood Luncheon for Alaska’s Needy

ANCHORAGE – On Thursday December 6th at noon, members of the Alaskan fishing industry will serve a seafood luncheon at Bean’s Café in Anchorage to 300-400 of the city’s poor and hungry. Under its Community Catch program, the At-sea Processors Association (APA) is donating 500 pounds of Alaska pollock and cod fillets for the Bean’s Café luncheon. APA volunteers will be on hand to serve up this nutritious meal, joined by representatives from the Food Bank of Alaska and Northwest Food Strategies.

"While national events occupy our thoughts, we must not overlook the needs of our neighbors and friends close at home. The APA fishing families that donated the seafood and volunteered their time believe that sharing the bountiful fishery resources off Alaska with those in need is one of the most important ways that we can help support local charities," said Trevor McCabe, executive director of APA.

Working in partnership with Northwest Food Strategies and America’s Second Harvest, the nation’s fifth largest charity, APA’s catcher/processor companies donate one million seafood meals annually to provide hunger relief. This year, 20,000 pounds of fish donated through APA’s Community Catch program was provided to the Food Bank of Alaska. The Food Bank of Alaska distributes food to 270 non-profit agencies in Alaska, including Bean’s Café.

The seven APA member companies that founded the Community Catch program are Alaska Ocean Seafood; American Seafoods Co.; Arctic Storm, Inc.; Glacier Fish Co.; Highland Light; Starbound Ltd. Partnership; and Trident Seafoods. Five western Alaska native groups—Coastal Villages Region Fund; Central Bering Sea Fishermen’s Assn.; Bristol Bay Economic Development Corporation; Norton Sound Economic Development Corporation; and Aleutian Pribilof Islands Community Development Assn.—hold significant ownership interests in four APA member companies.

The Food Bank of Alaska distributes well over 250,000 pounds of food per month through a statewide network of hunger-relief agencies, providing meals to the estimated 70,000 Alaskans who require food assistance.

Bean’s Café is a private non-profit, non-sectarian, stand-alone organization that serves more than 500 meals a day to Anchorage’s poor and hungry. Founded in 1979, Bean’s Café provides a helping hand to the hungry and homeless 365 days a year.

Northwest Food Strategies (NFS) is a non-profit organization that accesses seafood products for distribution to the America’s Second Harvest network of 200 food banks. NFS enrolls seafood industry partners and provides the logistical support link between seafood companies and America’s Second Harvest network, including coordinating transfer and delivery of donated products and overseeing reprocessing, quality assurance, packing and storage.

APA is a seafood trade association with offices in Anchorage, Juneau, Dutch Harbor and Seattle. APA members own and operate 19 U.S.-flag catcher/processor vessels that harvest Alaska pollock, cod and other groundfish species.

For further information about APA’s Community Catch program, please contact Jim Gilmore, APA's Director of Public Affairs, at (206) 285-5139 or by e-mail at jgilmore@atsea.org.

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