The long awaited day came in Toledo Friday, and an encouraging day it was with a lot of folks crowded around the old fire hall at the top of Highway 20, great music, new jobs, a vision for the future and smiling faces from one end of the place to the other.
It was the official celebration of the new Fishpeople processing facility on Business 20, just north of the grocery store, next door to the Port of Toledo. The Portland based business produces a wide variety of quick to cook pouches of absolutely dee-licious Chinook Salmon in a Chardonnay Sauce, Albacore Tuna in a Yellow Coconut Curry, Albacore Tuna in Thai Coconut Lemongrass, Chinook Salmon & Sea Shell Pasta in a Wild Mushroom Sauce and it just keeps going on and on and on.
Fishpeople’s CEO Duncan Berry told a large crowd of seafood lovers and business supporters that Fishpeople buys only ten specific species of fish that are sustainable in the world’s oceans. They are landed and quickly processed with the latest technology and quickly packaged to ensure freshness and great taste. Berry said Fishpeople products can be heated up in minutes and be consumed in minutes – all healthy and sustainable from the world’s oceans.
Berry said that the Oregon Coast is filled with fish people – those who catch fish, eat fish and repeat the cycle. He said that fish is an inherently healthy food with vital Omega-3’s and protein. He said by processing tuna and salmon right here on the coast, the fish don’t have to be flash frozen and trucked hundreds of miles to be processed. They’re processed right here in Toledo which adds 5 times the value than had it been shipped out of the area in freezer trucks.
Berry said their business model is working extremely well – again 2,000 stores and growing by the day. He said that they expect to grow their operations very rapidly at Port Station One and to keep right on growing. There is an abundance of land for that to happen down on the Toledo waterfront which Fishpeople have expressed more than a passing interest in, though no deals have been signed. But Fishpeople’s Duncan Berry says the whole point of opening operations at Port Station One is to grow their business responsibly and profitably to benefit not only themselves but the communities they live in and to help grow the local economy while supporting a sustainable fishery off the Oregon Coast.