FishBiz Project

Financial and business tools for Alaska commercial seafood harvesters brought to you by the Alaska Sea Grant Marine Advisory Program

Costs and Your Bottom Line

Dungeness Crabbing. Photo credit Alaska Sea Grant.

Once you have your fishing business off the ground, determining how your costs are measuring up against your income becomes a top priority. Alaska Sea Grant has developed an Excel spreadsheet tool specifically for Alaska fishermen to help do this.  (Note: you need Microsoft Excel to use this tool.) 

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Financial Statements

Kuskokwim. Photo credit Alaska Sea Grant.

Effective management of a commercial fishing business is based on complete annual data (expenses, income, taxes), a record-keeping system, and accurate accounting and financial statements. Once these systems are in place, a snapshot of your business financial status is at your fingertips, and you can work more effectively on your own or with other professionals to tackle more complex business decisions.

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Fish Ticket Manager

Herring catch. Photo credit Alaska Sea Grant.

Fish tickets are a primary source of financial and management data for your operation. Transferring ticket information to a spreadsheet helps track relative poundage of different species, sets the stage for other data such as crew shares, and serves as a crosscheck for processor year-end statements.

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Risk Management

Red crabbing. Photo credit Alaska Sea Grant.

Risk management means assessing and preparing for events that could compromise the profitability or viability of your business. Risk management has two components - preventing bad things from happening, and mitigating or recovering from the results if something does happen.

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Lowering Fuel Costs

Purse Seining. Photo credit Alaska Sea Grant.

Fuel costs are often a significant part of operation overhead, depending on the fishery and equipment needs. Understanding ways to lower fuel consumption can be as effective as installing a new engine. Alaska Sea Grant has several publications on fuel efficiency and understanding other energy systems on your vessel.

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