2019 Seafood Summit

Adding Value(s) to a Transforming Seafood System

About the Summit

The 3rd Local Seafood Summit celebrates the creativity and entrepreneurial spirit of small-scale and community-based seafood businesses committed to strengthening our local, regional, and national food systems.  It is an opportunity to showcase progress within the Local Catch Network, expand the community, and gain practical skills and knowledge that can help seafood businesses thrive.

The goals of the summit are to: (1) facilitate knowledge sharing, mentor relationships, and networking within our community and with new partners; (2) identify and develop innovative strategies for protecting, operationalizing, and promoting the core values; (3) increase LocalCatch.org’s capacity to directly support small-scale fishermen and values-based seafood businesses.  

Catalyzed by local innovation and global collaboration, seafood enterprises seeking to create safe, fair, sustainable supply chains that support marine conservation and coastal resilience continue to emerge.  However, these businesses also continue to face financial and organizational challenges that limit their ability to sustain a triple bottom line and potential long-term success. Recognizing these challenges, the summit is framed around the need to transparently incorporate values into a rapidly changing seafood system, thus adding value to small-scale fisheries.


Summit Highlights

  • Peer-to-peer knowledge exchange and networking

  • Group workshops on business planning, marketing, branding, tech innovations, environmental issues and more

  • Conversation about the core principles that motivate our collective work and how to operationalize those values within markets and business structures

  • A “swag” swap and marketplace

  • A Sustainable Seafood Soiree featuring local seafood and chefs

  • Field trip to coastal Oregon (optional)


We’re excited to announce that representatives from She Nah Nam Seafood and the Nisqually Tribe will be giving the keynote address at this years summit.

Their story, mission, and values resonate with the Local Catch Network Core Values. And like many of our members, She Nah Nam is constantly exploring ways to empower their community, steward the environment, and bring responsibly an ethically harvested seafood to more people.


2019 Summit Details


8:00 – 9:00 am       Registration, Breakfast, & Swag Swap Setup

9:00 – 9:30 am       Welcome

  • Joshua Stoll, University of Maine
  • Kelly Harrell, Sitka Salmon Shares
  • Taylor Witkin, Local Catch Network [Coordinator]
  • Colles Stowell, One Fish Foundation [Moderator]

9:30 – 10:15 am     Keynote

  • Willie Frank, Nisqually Natural Resources Department & She Nah Nam Seafood
  • Buck Jones, Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission

10:15 – 11:15 am    Marketplace of Ideas Summit participants will have two minutes to introduce themselves, share an idea, project, or challenge and then present an “ask” to the group.

11:15 – 12:30 pm   Lunch with Fisherpoet interlude Commercial fishermen and poets from the renowned Fisherpoets Gathering based in Astoria, OR will share their poetry, prose, and song

12:30 – 1:45 pm     Session I: Workshops Learn about the business of CSFs, supply chain relationships, and new business approaches that honor the ocean.

  • MAIN HALL – Exploring the Skipper Otto & Sitka Salmon Shares CSF Model
  • BOARD ROOM – The Costs and Benefits of Bringing Underutilized Species to Market
  • ALCOVE – Footprints and Fingerprints: Climate Change & Fisheries
  • KITCHEN – Sea to School: Sourcing Sustainable Seafood for School Lunches

1:45 – 2:00 pm       Break (Snacks and coffee available in the Main Hall)


2:00 – 3:15 pm       Session II: Workshops Learn about the business of CSFs, supply chain relationships, and new business approaches that honor the ocean

  • MAIN HALL – Scaling Up: Using People, Place, and Purpose to Grow Business in the Current Seafood Landscape
  • BOARD ROOM – Skipper Otto’s: Managing the Local Seafood Business
  • ALCOVE – Whither the local consumer?
  • KITCHEN – The Value(s) of a Frozen Fish: A Blind Challenge for Consumer Preferences and Perceptions

3:15 – 3:30 pm       Break (Snacks and coffee available in the Main Hall)

3:30 – 3:45 pm       Fisherpoet interlude Commercial fishermen and poets from the renowned Fisherpoets Gathering based in Astoria, OR will share their poetry, prose, and songs

3:45 – 4:30 pm       Marketplace of Ideas Extended As an extension of the Marketplace of Ideas, summit participants will share two-minute presentations about their businesses, ideas, challenges, and opportunities 

4:30 – 5:30 pm       Swag Swap & Marketplace Happy Hour  Mingle, drinks, silent auction, exchange merchandise, and continue the day’s discussions

5:30 – 9:00 pm       Local Seafood Soiree and Celebration Join us for a sampling of seafood caught by summit participants prepared by local chefs.

  • Maylin Chavez, Olympia Oyster Bar + Port Orford Sustainable Seafood
  • Derek Hansen, Jacqueline + Kenai Red Fish Co.
  • Jake Harth, Erizo + Blue Siren Shellfish Co.
  • Kirk Hardcastle, Grill Master + Sitka Salmon Shares



8:00 – 8:45 am       Coffee & light breakfast

8:45 – 9:00 am        Welcome & Fisherpoets

9:00 – 11:30 am      Local Catch – Charting the Course Ahead An interactive review of the Local Catch Network. The purpose for this session is to highlight concrete opportunities for collaboration and plant the seed for new engagement. 

  • PART I (10 min) – Where is the Local Catch Network today? What is its current function?
  • PART II (20 min) Four short stories of current opportunities, which lead into World Cafe-style breakout groups.
    • Joshua Stoll, University of Maine: Networking at home and abroad
    • Taylor Witkin, Local Catch Network: Local Catch Seafood Finder
    • Kevin Scribner, Forever Wild Seafood: Community Accountability
    • Hannah Heimbuch, Real Food Challenge: Hub for institutions
  • PART III (60 min) – World Cafe Breakout: Summit participants choose a group and topic to dive into and help explore further. Each group has a facilitator (from Part II) and notetaker.
  • PART IV (30 min) – Groups report back

11:30 – 11:40 am    Seafood Documentary Trailer Screenings

11:45 – 12:45 pm   Lunch

1:00 – 2:15 pm       Session III: Workshops Learn about the business of CSFs, supply Chain relationships, as well as new business approaches that honor the ocean.

  • MAIN HALL – Exploring the Fishadelphia model: Thinking about issues of affordability, access, and equity in local seafood
  • BOARD ROOM – SEA + TECH: Technology to support direct seafood marketing
  • ALCOVE – Weathering the Storm: An Essential Resilience Toolkit for Small and Medium-Scale Fishing and Seafood Businesses
  • KITCHEN – Managing a Restaurant Supported Fishery: Revitalizing the Catch of the Week

1:00 – 2:15 pm       The Redd West – Food Hub Tour Take a tour of The Redd West, a working hub for the regional food economy

(Note: Limited to 20 participants – sign up at check-in on Day 1)

2:15 – 2:30 pm       Break (Snacks and coffee available in the Main Hall)

2:30 – 3:45 pm       Session IV: Workshops Learn about the business of CSFs, supply Chain relationships, and new business approaches that honor the ocean.

  • MAIN HALL – Get your Tunas in a Row: Why Marketing Success can Only Happen Through an Organized Fishing Community
  • BOARD ROOM – Fishing Business Health Assessment: How to Chart a Course Towards Sustainability and Resilience
  • ALCOVE – Beneficial vs. Harmful Aquaculture: Where do we draw the line?
  • KITCHEN – Culinary Engineering: A San Diego case study for increasing the value of landings by expanding the city’s seafood palate

3:45 – 4:00 pm       Break (Snacks and coffee available in the Main Hall)

4:00 – 5:00 pm       Reflections

Kiera Vandeborn, TBuck Suzuki Environmental Foundation

5:00 – 5:15 pm       Closing Words

5:30 pm                  Adjourn Conference

Location: The Redd on Salmon Street, East

Date: Sunday, October 6th, 2019

Time: 5:30-8:30pm

The Local Catch Seafood Soiree & celebration will pair 5-6 local chefs with local, values-based seafood purveyors to produce an array of delectable small, “storied” seafood bites. Dishes prepared by chefs will be accompanied by a cash bar with beer and wine from Portland, as well as desserts provided by the summit’s catering company.

Restaurants play a crucial role in driving the shift toward responsible, ethical seafood supply chains. Through this gathering, we hope to expand the support structure for North America’s small-scale seafood businesses while bringing new and partners to the table, providing fresh energy and innovative ideas. We hope to welcome chefs and restaurateurs, entrepreneurs, the media, and anyone else that would like to contribute to our network. And most importantly, we would like to introduce chefs, seafood harvesters, and consumers to each and our network.

Chefs + Harvesters

Event Speakers: 

  • Ecotrust – Amanda Oborne (VP Food & Farms)
  • Fisherpoets
  • Chefs

Ticket Sales
Tickets to the dinner for summit attendees are included in registration for the Local Seafood Summit. Additional ticket sales will also be sold to the public and hosted by the University of Maine for $60. CLICK HERE to purchases additional tickets to the Seafood Soiree & Celebration.

Learn more about the workshops that took place during the 2019 summit: Workshop Descriptions

LocalCatch.org is excited to partner with Ecotrust to hold the 3rd Local Seafood Summit in it’s new event space, The Redd on Salmon Street.

The Redd is located in the heart of Portland’s Central Eastside, a neighborhood with a rich, hard-working industrial history that dates back to the mid-1800s. Over the years, the Central Eastside has grown to encompass food enterprises, small-batch distilleries, coffee roasters, emerging art galleries, and local food retailers that keep the hardworking spirit of this neighborhood alive in a new age of industry.

As a working hub for the regional food economy, the Redd honors this neighborhood’s roots and serves as a platform for the community to collaborate and engage in meaningful ways. Ecotrust sees the Redd as a catalyst for memorable celebrations and events that cultivate community, foster imagination, and enthusiastically color outside the lines.

Venue address: 831 SE Salmon St, Portland, OR 97214


The Inn at the Convention Center has created a 50-room block for summit attendees at a rate of $125/night (+ taxes and fees). Call (+1) 503-233-6331 to make a reservation and ask for the Local Catch Seafood Summit block or the LCSS rate code. The Inn at the Convention Center is a 30 minute walk from the summit venue and 1 block from the Portland Streetcar.

The Jupiter has offered Local Seafood Summit Attendees a 15% discount on hotel rooms at both of it’s properties. Book online and use the code SHELLYEAH (case sensitive) to access the discount. The Jupiter is a boutique hotel centrally located in SE Portland and 0.6 miles from the summit venue. Guests at The Jupiter also receive discounts at several local restaurants and breweries.

Other lodging options include The Hilton Portland Downtown or AirBNB.


Airport: Portland International Airport (PDX) is approximately 25 minutes from downtown Portland. It is serviced by most major airlines

AlaskaAirlines Discount Code: ECMC472 (enter discount code for flights to Portland, OR at online checkout).

Train: Amtrak’s Cascades Train has daily service to Portland, OR from Seattle, WA

Getting around Portland
Ride-sharing: Uber and Lyft both operate in the Portland area and are estimated to be less than $20 from the airport to downtown. Car2Go also operates in Portland.

MAX Light Rail Service: Portland’s efficient light-rail system connects the metro area, airport, and downtown core.

Bus Service

The 3rd Local Seafood Summit will host a swag swap, marketplace, ad silent auction during the conference. This is an opportunity to give away stuff with your logo, share promotional material, sell products, or donate items to the Local Catch silent auction. Simply bring your “swag” to the Summit and set it up in a creative way on designated tables near the registration area at The Redd.

  • Do you and/or your business have awesome promotional items, aka SWAG?
  • Do you have packaged, value-added seafood products or other goodies that you’d love to sell, share, or swap with others?
  • Do you have some artwork you’d like to share with seafood community?
  • Do you have a collection of hats and t-shirts and feel like pruning your stash?
  • Do you just like “SWAG” and have access to someone who can provide you with some to throw on a table for others to enjoy?

Guidelines are simple:

  • Put together some promotional swag to bring to the Summit.
  • Drop it off at the appropriate swag table sometime during the conference (preferably before the program starts).
  • There will be two sections: swaps, marketplace, and silent auction.
  • In the swaps section, leave something that you would like to share with others.
  • In the sales section, have someone from your organization at the table selling swag during breaks. If you want, you can even contribute some or all of the profits to LocalCatch.org!
  • Feeling charitable? Donate something to the Local Catch Silent Auction. This could be artwork, a book, clothing, etc.
  • Be mindful of space (please do not bring hundreds of items to giveaway)

What should you bring?

  • Anything with your business logo on it, like t-shirts, hats, or mugs
  • Shelf-stable, package seafood products, like canned salmon or dried seaweed
  • Artwork
  • Sell or giveaway a CSF share
  • Paper items like newsletters, annual reports, and other promotional items that you would like to share also welcome.

Please let Taylor Witkin (taylor.witkin@maine.edu) know if you have any questions, and please bring your SWAG to the Summit in October!

Because it was such a hit at the 2016 Local Seafood Summit, we are currently planning a field excursion to coastal Oregon at the conclusion of the Summit. This will be an opportunity to learn more about the innovative direct marketing strategies being used in the region and showcase some of the challenges and opportunities that small-scale fishers face. Email Taylor Witkin (taylor.witkin@maine.edu) and Kevin Scribner (scribfish@gmail.com) with any questions.


Morning Session 

8:30AM, Leave from The Redd

9 AM, Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission (CRITFC) Office, Portland, OR

  • Buck Jones, Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission
    • Tribal Treaties, Fishing

10:30 AM, Port of Vancouver, WA

  • Guy Norman, North West Power & Conservation Council, former Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife staff
    • Salmon Harvest and Restoration Management
    • Marine Mammals—sea lions

12:30 PM, Longview.WA

  • Robert Sudar, Fishmonger
    • Columbia River Commercial Fishing & the Recreational Angler Sector

2 pm, Cathlamet, OR—lunch 

  • Irene Martin, historian/author of Columbia River fishing

4 pm, Astoria:, OR, Happy Hour

  • Port of Astoria & Development—future of Astoria Waterfront

6 pm, Dinner at South Bay Wild Seafood

  • Rob & Tiffany Seitz—Trawling & Catch Shares, Working Waterfront, Vertically Integrated Sales, Fisher Poets

Overnight in Astoria: Atomic Motel


Morning Session

9:30 AM, Garibaldi, OR

  • Valerie Folkema & Mike Sainborn, Port of Garibaldi  
    • Developing a Seafood Value Chain Initiative, infrastructure, and creating an environment of shared resources and infrastructure
  • Kristen Penner, Piers End & the Garibaldi Cultural Heritage Initiative
    • Tourism and  Shop the Docks, Fish Biz programing, and Saving historical buildings)
  • Jeremy Coon, Tillamook Bay Seafoods
    • Entrepreneurism and starting a seafood business, and infrastructure access
  • Garibaldi Landing & Fish People
    • Certified B-corporation in seafood, selling direct through a on the dock store front, value added products, traceability, and infrastructure.

Afternoon Sessions

Netarts Bay, OR

12:30pm, lunch at Schooner Restaurant  

2:00pm, Esther Lev, Wetland Conservancy & Liu Xin, Oregon Oyster Farms

  • Wild Olympia oysters, oyster farming, estuary restoration, and partnerships.

3:00pm, Chrissy Smith WEBS & Whiskey Creek Shellfish Hatchery

  • Ocean Acidification & Shellfish Hatchery operations

4:00pm, Return to Portland (2-hour drive)

Who should attend the summit?

The Local Seafood Summit is a practitioner-centric event. It is for small- and mid-scale seafood harvesters and businesses that are interested in sharing experiential knowledge, learning strategies that make community supported fisheries and direct-marketing businesses successful, and collaborating to build a trustworthy, low-impact, domestic seafood supply system. The summit provides an opportunity for those interested in direct-marketing to learn from established businesses and connect directly with other resources in a network that supports good, clean, fair seafood.

Additionally, a primary goal of the summit is to foster relationships between the seafood industry and the support sectors that are critical to the transition toward socio-ecologically responsible, values-based seafood systems. Therefore, the summit is not limited to fishermen and seafood businesses. Through this gathering, we hope to expand the support structure for North America’s small-scale seafood businesses while bringing new and non-traditional partners to the table, providing fresh energy and innovative ideas. We hope to welcome chefs and restaurateurs, entrepreneurs, the media, and anyone else that would like to contribute to our network. 


Photo: David Hills, fishypictures.com

Photos: David Hills, fishypictures.com



Planning Committee

Taylor Witkin, LocalCatch.org
Kelly Harrell, Sitka Salmon Shares
Julianna DiTomasso , Northwest Atlantic Marine Alliance
Daniella Williams, NeighborWorks Umpqua
Joshua Stoll, University of Maine
Kevin Scribner, Forever Wild Seafood
Colles Stowell, One Fish Foundation
Tyson Rasor, Ecotrust
Kiera Vandeborne, TBuck Suzuki Environmental Foundation


Past Summits

The 2016 Local Seafood Summit in Norfolk, VA and the 2012 National Summit on CSFs in Portsmouth, NH brought together fishermen, business owners, and community leaders from across the country to explore the challenges and opportunities associated with local, values-based, and direct-marketed seafood. It culminated in the development of a set of Core Values for the Local Catch Network