To limit the catch to only targeted species and avoid the non-targeted bycatch of vulnerable stocks, we troll wild salmon by hook-and-line (with species-specific lures) and harvest in terminal net fisheries (directing the catch in areas where only the targeted species is present). The five species f wild Pacific salmon – chinook, coho, sockeye, keta and pink – vary in size, color, texture, and fat content but all share a superb taste, high protein content, and low saturated fat and high polyunsaturated Omega-3 fatty acid content from their diet of the rich ocean nutrients of the North Pacific.


The largest of the salmon, chinook (also known as spring or king), are harvested by hook-and-line in the Haida Gwaii (“islands on the edge of the world”), a remote archipelago located on the Northwest Coast of British Columbia between Vancouver Island and the State of Alaska. This fishery occurs from June through August as the chinook salmon complete the final leg of a 1,200 mile migration and four to seven year life cycle. The chinook’s diet, which consists mainly of fish and invertebrates like squid, shrimp, crab larvae and other crustaceans, provides for a high fat content and a well-defined, rich­flavored flesh ranging in color from marbled to red.


Of all the salmon, chinook is the only type with a white or ivory variety. Comparatively rare – only three to five per cent of chinook are white fleshed – ivory chinook are thought to have a recessive gene that prevents them from taking up the naturally occurring pigments called carotenoids which occur in the shrimp, krill and crab that form the diet of chinook salmon. Chefs will often add a little acidity when preparing the almost creamy flesh of the ivory ch inook to enhance its bold, pure and slightly sweet flavor.


Sockeye salmon range the furthest of all salmon and unlike most other species of sockeye which are caught at the approach to their spaw­ning grounds, the North Pacific sockeye may yet have 1,000 miles left in their migration when they are harvested. The North Pacific sockeye maintains extremely high fat reserves in anticipation of the long journey to their natal streams. From a diet of shrimp and other crustaceans, the North Pacific sockeye is provided an intensely red colored flesh, high Omega-3 oil content, and very rich taste.



The Harrison sockeye are different from other sockeye. Where most sockeye feed and grow in lakes for a year or two before moving out to the ocean, the Harrison sockeye go to sea shortly after they emerge from the gravel where they hatched. Their migratory behavior is also different from that of the other Fraser River sockeye runs – the Harrison sockeye return to the lake and then move back into the river where other sockeye return to and stay in the lake. Harvested by First Nations – an essential part of First Nations traditions, the name is derived from “Sau-kai” which means chief – using a species-specific (i.e. no bycatch mortality) beach seine, this is the only commercial source of Harrison sockeye.


The largest natural lake system in British Columbia, the Babine-Nilkitkwa also supports the largest single sockeye salmon population in Canada and accounts for as much as 95 per cent of the Skeena River sockeye production. These fish are caught by the Lake Babine Nation in weirs – traps placed in the Babine River that enable only the desired species to be targeted. Harvested early in the migration cycle, these Babine River sockeye are distinguis­hed by a deep crimson-colored flesh and a unique balance of oil and mild taste.


During its three-year lifecycle, the northern coho stays much closer to shore than the other salmon species. The largest of the coho family, the northern coho feed on herring, pilchards, squid, and crustaceans that provide for a firm, fine-textured and full-flavored vibrant red-orange flesh that chefs covet for grilling and broiling.


The Harrison keta salmon are harvested by beach seine on one of the Fraser River’s most significant salmon producing tributaries. The Sts’ ail es and Scowlitz First Nations harvest these fish in late October and early November in a community-based fishery that dates back hundreds of years and yet is still considered a model of selectivity because of its terminal location and capacity for live release of unintended bycatch like chinook salmon and steelhead. Of the four distinct runs of keta in the Harrison system, our salmon are represented by the second and third runs which are characterized by larger fish with green-colored backs, white sides with often a distinctive pink “paw” mark, and ivory flesh that is described as having an incredibly clean taste.