Port Orford Seafood

Co-manager Kean Fleming pulls a piece of freshly processed skate from the blast freezer Monday at Port Orford Sustainable Seafood in Port Orford.

COOS BAY — Port Orford Sustainable Seafood is back in Coos Bay offering customers throughout the area the opportunity to join its Community Supported Fishery and directly connect to its online seafood market.

The community fishery, which allows for customers to purchase a subscription to its inventory, set up a new pickup location site at the Coos Head Food Co-op in Coos Bay last month.

Rock fish caught Sunday sit on ice before processing Monday at Port Orford Sustainable Seafood in Port Orford.

Kean Fleming, a CSF co-manager, said the fishery will make its delivery to the Co-op on the third Thursday of each month. With a subscription, members not only have the chance to select fish of their choosing, but they will also receive weekly emails on the fishery’s latest catch and updates.

According to Fleming, all the fish available in its inventory is completely caught and processed directly by Port Orford fisherman. Each fish is sustainably caught with a hook and line and labeled with the name of the vessel and fisherman involved with its capture, said Fleming.

“The Co-op seemed to be a really natural fit for us,” said Fleming. “All of our fish is 100 percent traceable and that’s important because our customers really care about where their fish comes from.”

Co-founder and fisherman Aaron Longton said he began the community fishery in 2009 by selling fish at a farmer’s market in Medford. It was then he said that he experienced direct, one-on-one interactions with customers for the first time rather than deal with the usual corporate buyers.

“I remember one of the first sales we had they were so excited that we were there,” said Longton. “They were happy to meet us and they thanked us for fishing. It was the only time I had ever heard that in my entire life and so I wanted other fisherman to experience that too.”

Aaron Longton shows off a paper thin rock fish carcass after filleting it Monday at Port Orford Sustainable Seafood. Longton is co-founder of …

The community fishery services sites up and down the I-5 corridor from Portland to Ashland. Besides its home site in Port Orford, the only other location on the coast is in Coos Bay. So, far the fishery has about 300 members and is looking to reach its goal of 500 by the end of the year.

Depending on the season, its inventory includes Pacific albacore, cabezon, halibut, ling cod, rockfish, Chinook salmon as well as Dungeness crab and sablefish.

Kean Fleming prints product labels Monday in his office overlooking Battle Rock Wayside Park at Port Orford Sustainable Seafood.

“I’m a fisherman and ocean advocate,” said Longton. “With this system, it helps keeps jobs in our area and it puts money back into our local communities.”

For more information on Port Orford Sustainable Seafood or to become a member you can visit its website at https://www.posustainableseafood.com/ or call its office at 541-671-0704.

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Reporter Amanda Linares can be reached at 541-266-2039 or by email at amanda.linares@theworldlink.com.