Alaska Fisheries Development Foundation Announces the 2020 Alaska Symphony of Seafood

The Alaska Fisheries Development Foundation (AFDF) announced the Call for Product for the 27th annual Alaska Symphony of Seafood which culminates in 2020. The Alaska Symphony of Seafood is a competition for new value-added products made from Alaska seafood. The overall goal is to inspire innovative ways to fully utilize and increase the value of Alaska’s seafood. The Call for Productis now available. Entry forms and fees are due by October 15, 2019. All information is available at AFDF’s website.

Product development is essential for Alaska Seafood to remain relevant to consumers. The Alaska Symphony of Seafood is an exciting platform that encourages companies to invest in product development, helps them promote those new products, and competitively positions Alaska Seafood in national and global markets. Each new product entered in the competition is grouped into one of four categories: Retail, Foodservice, Beyond the Plate and Beyond the Egg. “A significant portion of the value and health benefits in any fishery resource is found in the byproducts and roe. The Symphony is continuing to encourage and promote new product development in these particular categories which has an overall effect of increasing the value of the resource, improving nutritional output, and reducing waste – a win-win-win,” said Julie Decker, Executive Director of AFDF. “We are pleased to continue to offer these categories, Beyond the Plate and Beyond the Egg, which also reflect exciting recent trends and investments in the seafood industry.”

Why enter a value-added product into the Symphony?

Product entries are individually evaluated by a panel of expert judges during a private judging session. Evaluations are based on the product’s packaging, presentation, overall eating experience, price and potential for commercial success.

“We got exactly what we wanted from the event—contacts for production partners. Overall, a very positive experience!” – David Chessik of Ed’s Kasilof Seafoods with Baltica Fish Broth.

“I encourage all companies to develop a product and compete in the Symphony. It keeps all of us in the industry striving to be better and keeps Alaska Seafood positioned as a premium on the world stage!” — Keith Singleton from Alaskan Leader Seafoods, 2018 Grand Prize and Retail 1st Place for Alaskan Cod with Lemon Herb Butter.

First, second and third place winners from each category are awarded, as well as an overall Grand Prize, Seattle People’s Choice and Juneau People’s Choice. First place winners from each product category will receive free booth space at Seafood Expo North America (SENA), the industry’s biggest event of the year in Boston. The winners will also automatically be entered into the Seafood Excellence Awards (SEA), a new products contest held at the SENA, which will provide additional national and international exposure. Airfare for one company representative to attend the show will be provided by Alaska Air Cargo. All first-place products will be photographed by a professional, featured at each winners’ booths and made available for marketing and sales efforts. Winners will also have the use of a sticker that can be featured on the packaging and used for other marketing efforts. Winners will have access to and use of all digital materials created. The media opportunities associated with the Alaska Symphony of Seafood are numerous. Many articles, editorials, and advertisements will be produced featuring the event and its winners. It is a great promotional boost for any new product.

Judging and Open House events will be held in Seattle on November 20, 2019 and in Juneau on February 24, 2020. The winners will be given an opportunity to display their winning products at SENA from March 15-17, 2020. During the Seattle Open House, the chefs, manufacturers, buyers, sellers and media are invited to vote on their favorite product at the Seattle reception. This award – Seattle People’s Choice – will be announced at the end of the event. The first-place award in each category will be kept confidential until a public announcement at the Pacific Marine Expo (PME) on Friday, Nov. 22nd held in collaboration with Diversified Communications. The overall grand prize, the second and third place awards in each category, and the Juneau People’s Choice will all be announced at the end of the Juneau Legislative Reception co-hosted with the United Fishermen of Alaska (UFA).

In order to hold these events, the Symphony is 100% funded by industry and its supporters each year. AFDF would like to recognize and thank our major sponsors from last year: Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute, Alaska Air Cargo, Alaskan Brewing Company, Aleutian Pribilof Island Community Development Association, At-sea Processors Association, Bristol Bay Economic Development Corporation, City of Unalaska, Kwik’Pak Fisheries LLC, Marel, Northwest Fisheries Association, Trident Seafoods, UniSea and United Fishermen of Alaska. Click here for more information on Symphony sponsorship opportunities and benefits.

About the Alaska Fisheries Development Foundation

Founded in 1978, AFDF is dedicated to identifying common opportunities in the Alaska seafood industry and developing efficient, sustainable outcomes that provide benefits to the economy, environment and communities. For more information, visit our website.