Bristol Bay Sockeye Salmon Brand Makes Big Splash in 2018

Sitka, Alaska – The Bristol Bay Sockeye Salmon run not only set a record in 2018, but the brand also made a big splash at retailers across the country. The branding program was developed by the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association in 2016 in Boulder, Colorado before being launched nationwide in 2017. The brand continues to grow as more and more retailers across the country tell their customers the story of where their fish comes from, promoting in over 1,000 stores in 2018.

The marketing program capitalizes on the themes of ‘wild taste from an amazing place’ and offers an array of high-quality digital assets, point-of-sale materials and promotional support to showcase Bristol Bay Sockeye Salmon’s iconic red flesh and delicious taste, while paired against a backdrop of stunning vistas, and the Alaskan fishermen who bring in the harvest each year.

Pavilions in Southern California promoted Bristol Bay Sockeye Salmon during October, National Seafood Month, to great success, with Bristol Bay Sockeye Salmon sales posting an 81% increase over refreshed sockeye sales for the same period in 2017. Bristol Bay Sockeye Salmon transaction counts (within the service seafood category) represented 3% of the overall service seafood transaction for the month, which is significant for a new item that was introduced while fresh salmon was still an available option to the consumer. This promotion was part of an innovative tie-in promotion with Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute promoting a dedicated Alaska section of the seafood case during October.

“I am extremely pleased with the Alaska/Bristol Bay promotion results,” said Mark Angulo, Pavilions Meat and Seafood Sales Manager. “Adding store excitement while educating consumers is a win-win situation. We received support in preparing and executing associate training, point-of-sale materials and consumer handouts. We could not ask for a better partnership.”

Back in the Pacific Northwest, customers were also getting a good taste for the story of Bristol Bay Sockeye Salmon at product sampling demos at select Quality Food Center (QFC) stores across the region.

“Our stores loved the promotion. Bristol Bay has a very strong brand that messages really well with our clientele, who are more tapped into social responsibility and sustainability than ever before. Bristol Bay has beautiful point-of-sale and branding that aligns with those sensibilities,” said Josh Dooley, QFC Meat and Seafood Manager. All 63 QFC stores promoted Bristol Bay Sockeye Salmon both during the summer fresh season and in November.

In December, Midwest retailer Hy-Vee promoted Bristol Bay Sockeye Salmon with product demos and point-of-sale materials in over 200 stores. Two custom social media ads were developed featuring Bristol Bay photography and video assets with custom animation and Hy-Vee branding. The ads reached over 67,000 likely seafood consumers in Hy-Vee’s major markets. Also during the promotion, Bristol Bay sockeye salmon fishermen visited area stores to further promote the Bristol Bay fishery.

“We were very pleased with the results of our partnership with Bristol Bay Sockeye Salmon, both during the December event and over the past several months,” said Jason Pride, Vice President of Meat and Seafood for Hy-Vee. “Hy-Vee is committed to making sure that our customers always have access to the freshest seafood which is brought to them through sustainable methods, and this promotion helped that message get to even more of our customers.”

Bristol Bay Sockeye Salmon, a brand managed by the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association (BBRSDA), has many retail promotions planned for 2019, but is actively recruiting new retail and foodservice partners. Interested partners can contact BBRSDA at to set up a meeting. BBRSDA will also be exhibiting at the Seafood Expo North America in Boston from March 18-20, at booth #3450.


The Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association works to maximize the value of the Bristol Bay fishery for the benefit of our members. The BBRSDA works to achieve this mission through strategies focused on marketing, quality and sustainability. These strategic priorities are inherently connected, and are presented here in no particular order. Projects that are carried out in each area support efforts of the others. Only through this multifaceted approach can we enhance the value of the fishery.