ComFish 2016 Brings Vendors and Senators to Kodiak

Kayla Desroches/KMXT

Next week brings us another year of ComFish Alaska – a commercial fishery trade show that provides Kodiak with a room full of vendors, several political updates, and a series of talks, among other things. Julie Bonney is the vice president of the Kodiak Chamber of Commerce Board and sits on what they call the “Fish Committee,” a group of volunteers that helps organize ComFish.

Bonney mentions two notable guest speakers who will talk at ComFish 2016.

“We’re gonna have both Senator Sullivan and Senator Murkowski here. Senator Murkowski’s gonna be talking about what’s coming out of Washington D.C. that affects the Coast Guard Base, and then Senator Sullivan gonna be talking about fishery regulations that’s coming out of D.C., particularly the Magnuson Stevenson Act reauthorization.”

Trevor Brown, director of the Chamber of Commerce, which hosts the event, says those two speakers are especially exciting.

“Definitely having the senators here is such a great thing for the community. I mean, to be able to do a town hall with them, having this event that attracts those people to the island so the local community can have face-to-face time with them and ask questions and things. That by far is probably the biggest attraction for the forums.”

Brown says the vendors, from companies that sell engines to those that sell nets, are mostly returning participants, and they make bigger waves in Kodiak than they might in a larger city.

“They come because, I mean, people go to Marine Expo in Seattle, but when they come here – this is a fishing community. Seattle, there’s so many other things going on that, yeah, it’s a big fishing port, but in comparison to the city it’s not. Whereas here, it is our life.”

ComFish will offer a whole selection of forums which will educate listeners about the fishing industry.

“Friday is jam-packed full. We have the morning kinda dedicated to research. We have [a] pacific halibut study, pollok reproductive study. Gunnar Knapp, director and professor of economics at UAA, is gonna give a salmon market update and state fiscal challenge update.”

ComFish will be March 31 to April 2. You can find a full list of the vendors and forums on the ComFish website.

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