The fish that featured were hand-selected for the President from Cooke’s Deep Cove site, near Eastport, one of Maine’s oldest salmon farms. They were harvested and packaged for shipment at the True North Salmon Processing facility in Machiasport. On arrival in Washington the salmon were smoked by the Executive Chef of the Blair House before being served to guests including the new President.
“We know that Maine’s aquaculture industry is having a major impact on the prosperity of our coastal communities and working waterfronts and that the Maine brand is well respected by customers all over the United States,” says Sebastian Belle, Maine Aquaculture Association’s Executive Director.
“To have farmed salmon that were raised in the State of Maine served to President Trump, Governor LePage and to those celebrating today’s Inauguration, is a real honor and affirmation of our healthy, high quality, sustainably produced farmed seafood,” he added.
“Many of the men and women who raised these fish are long-term employees with a lifetime of experience on the water and proud contributors to the local economy,” said Glenn Cooke, CEO of Cooke Aquaculture USA.
“They took great pride in selecting beautiful fish for the trip to Washington. Our company has a keen interest in promoting the Maine Brand, in the future of the State’s economy, the health of its communities and its people and the health of the US seafood sector,” he continued.
Cooke employs approximately 250 people in Maine in its fully integrated salmon farming operations. As the largest employer and taxpayer in the City of Eastport and a major employer in Machiasport, the company is a key contributor to the State’s economy.
“Maine seafood is the best in the world and it’s a great honor to know that the Maine brand, which reflects our pristine environment and world-class quality, will be represented during the inauguration,” said Maine Department of Marine Resources Commissioner Patrick Keliher.
Maine has over 190 farms that raise finfish, shellfish. They generate $137 million a year.
“Americans want more farmed Atlantic salmon and the Maine industry can deliver as we continue to improve and innovate to meet the increasing demand for our products,” said Belle. “Maine aquaculture is ready to grow and play a major role in reversing our country’s seafood trade deficit.”