Fish Radio

Halibut quota shares top $65/lb

March 15, 2016

Alaska halibut fishing regions Credit: IPHC

Alaska halibut fishing regions
Credit: IPHC 

This is Fish Radio. I’m Laine Welch – You won’t believe the price of halibut quota shares. I’ll tell you more after this —

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Prices for quota shares of halibut skyrocketed after managers announced slightly higher catch rates in January. The small boost combined with hopes of a repeat of $6-$7 dock prices  sent quota share prices through the ceiling.

I would say quota prices shot up $10 a pound from December.

Olivia Olsen runs Alaskan Quota and Permits in Petersburg.  She says it’s a tight market in Southeast.

Sales have been few. We have current sales pending at $63 and $65 per pound, with rumors of going higher. Those prices are just unheard of, and to jump up that high in that short period of time – oh, my golly!

Are people buying at those nosebleed prices?

There’s a lot of people drawing the line, but there are a few who have bought. They’ve been waiting a long time for it and are just going to bite the bullet.

The same holds true for quota prices in Area 3A, the  Central Gulf, Alaska’s largest halibut fishing hole.

Those are bumping up to $60 We’ve had offers of $59 but no takers.

Doug Bowen runs Alaska Boats and Permits in Homer. Halibut shares in Area 3B, the Western Gulf have increased by around $5 and are in the low $40s, if you can find it.

 There is a perception that the perhaps the catch limits have bottome out there. We did get a 2 1/4/percent increase. We’ve got buyers looking for 3B.    21  Also interest in Bering Sea regions but lot fewer players. Same scenario – more buyers than sellers.  

Halibut shares in the Aleutians and Bering Sea areas are listed between $16 and $25 a pound, on average. Brokers will be watching prices closely as the  fishery gets underway on March 19.

Olivia Olsen –

With these higher prices it’s encouraging a few people to get out and list. And once they heard of the higher prices it will be interest to see if we get more quota on the market and if it will sustain at that level.  I have no idea.

Learn more about Alaska halibut this month at ComFish in Kodiak.

Fish Radio is also brought to you by Ocean Beauty Seafoods – who salutes and says thanks to the men and women fishing across Alaska for their hard work and dedication. ( In Kodiak, I’m Laine Welch.