A Sitka-based seafood processor has won an innovation award — although it hasn’t processed much fish yet.
Northline Seafoods was one of nine international organizations recognized by Fish 2.0, at its Innovation Forum at Stanford University earlier this month.
The award has a cash component, but Northline’s co-founder hopes the big prize is new investment in what his company considers a higher-quality product.
Northline Seafoods has converted a former helicopter logging barge into a floating processor over the past year in Sitka’s industrial park.
The company plans to station the barge in western Bristol Bay during next summer’s sockeye run, to significantly reduce delivery times for fishermen working at a distance from the region’s shore-based processors, and then resupply them with ice during the lightning-fast season.
Northline co-founder Ben Blakely has long been one of those fishermen. He applied to Fish 2.0 back in February, and spent four months providing the forum with information and interviews about the Northline operation.