By: James Mackovjak
The late Bob Thorstenson, one of the founders of Icicle Seafoods, once told me his favorite seafood was canned pink salmon. Bob had good taste.
Canned salmon, which has been produced in Alaska since 1878, is the most nutritious and consumer-friendly of all of Alaska’s seafood. While the product is often considered poor cousin to skinless, boneless salmon fillets, canned salmon is by far the more nutritious of the two. Yes, both canned salmon and salmon fillets are very rich in protein, but canned salmon—because it contains salmon flesh, skin, and bones—provides additional nutritional benefits. First, there is fish oil. With fillets, the healthy oil may be cooked out of the product during preparation. With canned salmon, the fish is cooked in the can, so all of the oil is retained. Second, canned salmon includes the fish’s bones, a valuable source of calcium. And then there is the skin, which contains a variety of important nutrients. Add to this the fact that canned salmon is easily digestible.
Regarding consumer friendliness, canned salmon, unlike frozen or fresh salmon fillets, requires no refrigeration and has a shelf life of five years. A meal of canned salmon can be as simple as opening can and eating the fish with a fork. For those who desire something more elaborate, canned salmon can be poured over a salad, or noodles, or rice. The options are endless.