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Why Inlet Fish?

Inlet Fish Producers is a processor of premium Wild Alaska Salmon with headquarters located on the Kenai Peninsula, a three hour drive from Anchorage, Alaska. The company operates two processing plant facilities from mid-May to early September each year. One facility is near the mouth of the Kenai River and the other is near the mouth of the Kasilof River.  The two plants are very close to one another….about 12 miles or only 15 minutes driving time apart. The company employs 250 to 300 people each summer to process salmon caught in the Cook Inlet and Prince William Sound commercial fisheries. We ship large quantities of fresh wild Alaska salmon to US markets in the “Lower 48”, and frozen salmon to a wide array of international customers in Japan, China and Europe. We are committed to providing premium quality products to the global seafood market. We’re also committed to providing a personal and professional work experience for our employees.

Inlet Fish Producers’ corporate office is located in Kenai and open year-round. The processing season generally lasts from mid-May to early September each year, depending on the flow of fish. The 2017 season is expected to last until September 7, 2017. There are still openings available for the 2017 season at both plants.

The Kenai Fish Plant

The Kenai Plant

The Kenai processing plant is located about eight miles from the city of Kenai.  The City of Kenai (pronounced Keen-eye) has a population of 6,300 and is located on the beautiful Kenai Peninsula at the mouth of the Kenai River. Kenai is a modern city with a Safeway, Home Depot, Wal-Mart, movie theater,  library, bowling alley, fast food franchises and all other modern city conveniences. The Kenai Peninsula is famous for salmon & halibut sport fishing.

The Kenai plant houses our company’s corporate offices, handles all of the transport and shipping of fish to and from our processing facilities, and also does the bulk of fresh whole-salmon processing and shipping. Summer employment generally falls into three basic areas: the main processing line, the roe room, and case-up. New employees are given on-the-job training by our qualified management team, and evaluated as the season progresses to determine the areas in the plant in which they will be most effective. The work is repetitive, and during the peak season, the hours can be very long depending on the volume of fish that comes in each day to be processed. The company provides overtime wages for all hours worked over 8 hours per day or 40 hours per week, so the long hour days are prized by our workers as that is how they pile up a good earnings total for the season.

The Kenai plant receives fish from the Kenai and Kasilof docks, and trucked fish from Whittier, Alaska, which is our entry point into the Prince William Sound fishery. The fish are sorted on the docks according to the varying species of salmon, and then loaded into carrying totes to be transported by truck to the Kenai plant, where they are unloaded and sent through the processing line. The fish are gutted and cleaned, and the roe (fish eggs) are separated and sent to the roe room to be processed.

95% of our roe products are currently shipped to Japan, where the fish egg market is strongest. We specialize in two types of roe, Sujiko and Ikura. Sujiko comes from the smaller eggs of Sockeye and Silver salmon, and Ikura comes from the larger eggs of Chum, Pink, and King salmon. Both types of roe find a large market in Japan, for sushi and other preparations.

Overflow processing of fresh fish also takes place at the Kasilof Plant.

Inlet Fish Producers - Kasilof Plant

The Kasilof Plant

The Kasilof Plant handles overflow processing of fresh whole salmon, and also processes and packages salmon fillets. Located on the Kasilof River, this plant also receives direct off-loading of fish from fishing boats during the summer season.

After initial processing at either plant, the fish are then packed whole to be shipped fresh to our distributors, or else sent to Kasilof where the processed fish are cut into fillets, frozen, packaged, and shipped.

Inlet Fish Producers prides itself on a wide range of the freshest Wild Alaskan Salmon products, and we ship to a global market of seafood distributors and retailers.

The Kenai Fish Plant

Where you fit in

Each year the recruiting office and floor managers work to place each new worker in an area of the plant that best suits their skills and the needs of the company at any time. Over the course of the season you might find yourself working on a wide range of teams doing several different activities, or you may stick to one area consistently throughout the entire season. Placement is dictated by the needs of the company, and the plant managers and recruiting office retains the right to place people where they best fit the company’s needs.

That being said, if you understand that the nature of the fish processing industry is such that any job will consist of relatively repetitive tasks done over long hours, you will find that the crew is willing to work with you to make the most of your potential. Many employees past and present comment that working for us is like joining a large close-knit family community. We treat our employees like family, and strive to give employees everything necessary to excel at their work and have fun doing it.

Any prospective employee with questions about our plants, the work environment, traveling to Alaska, etc, may contact us using the contact form on this website.

 

 

The American Beauty - one of our premium tenders

Our Fishing Practices

Inlet Fish Producers abides by a strict sustainable fishing standard. We work only with fishing boats that abide by the regulations set by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, which monitors the size and stability of the salmon runs from year to year, and regulates on a daily basis the amount of fishing that can be done each season to allow for a full replenishment and continuation of the salmon population. The Alaska fishing industry is based on the effective sustainability of the salmon fishery, and we work cooperatively with others in the fishing industry to ensure that this standard is met.

Within the boundaries of these regulations, we work to ensure that the company is receiving fish during the entirety of the season. Because our work depends on the ebb and flow of a natural phenomenon (when the salmon choose to return to the rivers of their birth to spawn), it’s impossible to predetermine how much fish we will receive at any one time. And there is always a rhythm to the season: there will be slow times at the plant, and times when people will be required to work 14 to 16 hour days to process our largest catches of fish.

Generally speaking, you should expect the month of July to be the most intensive part of the season, with the surrounding months of June and August being somewhat slower. Even so, we spread a wide net (pun intended!) to receive fish from several Alaskan locales, and thus maintain as much of a steady workflow throughout the season as possible. Our two primary fisheries are in Cook Inlet and Prince William Sound, and the relative volumes and run timing allow us to provide a steady flow of fish to the two plants for a season that lasts almost four full months, but which peaks in volume from early June to late August.

Keep reading if you are interested in becoming part of our summer employment program.

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