I received a good question from a customer and thought I would take this time to share it with all of you. Here it is:
“Nate, Could you please tell me the difference between
1)Smoked Sockeye Salmon
2) Smoked Alaskan salmon
This is a very good question Bob; let me digress for a moment.
Salmon can be broken into two groups here in the United States.Group one is Pacific salmon (west cost). That includes areas like, Washington, California and Alaska. Group two is Atlantic salmon (east cost). Atlantic salmon is also referred to as Farmed Salmon.
Next time you go to your local grocer look in the meat department at the salmon they offer. They are required to label the salmon as Atlantic salmon (Farmed) or Alaska salmon. It is the law. They have to distinguish where the salmon came from.
Now looking at the Pacific salmon, more specifically the Alaska salmon, you have 5 species of salmon. You have King Salmon, Sockeye Salmon, Coho Salmon, Keta Salmon and Pink Salmon.
Now back to Bobís labeling question. If you pick up product that says “Smoked Sockeye Salmon” then that is exactly what you have. If you pick up a product that is labeled “Smoked Alaskan Salmon” then you have 1 of the 5 species mentioned above.
So why would a company label product as “Alaskan” instead of being specific and saying “Sockeye” or “King”? There are 2 possible reasons for this. The first reason is a little shady. As a company I can buy pink salmon the cheapest out of all 5 species. So if I smoked the pink salmon and sold it for nearly the same price as Sockeye Salmon or King Salmon, then wow I just increased my profit margin and made a lot of money! I find that to be a little deceptive and do not operate that way. Itís not good business.
The second option is that a company uses the same package for multiple products. So letís say I am selling alder Smoked Sockeye Salmon Fillets and alder Smoked King Salmon Fillets. I may choose to have the box printed as “Smoked Alaskan Salmon” so I can use it for either species. If this is the case my pricing will be reflective of the species inside.
So be alert when you are buying salmon. Look on the package to see what species you are buying and where the salmon is from.