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Hunting & Fishing

Kwik'pak Fisheries To Require Employees To Be Vaccinated Against COVID-19

Kwik'Pak Fisheries in Emmonak, Alaska on July 15, 2019.
Anna Rose MacArthur

Kwik’pak Fisheries in Emmonak, the only fish buyer on the Yukon River mouth, is requiring its employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19.


General Manager Jack Schultheis said that Kwik’pak Fisheries employs up to 400 workers each day, all of whom will have to show their COVID-19 vaccination cards before beginning work this season.

“Customers are extremely concerned over who is manufacturing the food they're buying from us,” Schultheis said. “So we're trying to protect our workers, the community, and the people who eat the food we produce.”

On the company’s Facebook page, Kwik’pak wrote that some of its customers are mandating that the companies that they buy fish from have all their employees vaccinated. On the same Facebook post, Kwik’pak wrote that it’s requesting all fishermen get vaccinated as well. However, Schultheis said that fishermen will not be required to be vaccinated because they are independent contractors and not Kwik’pak employees.

Vaccinated fishermen will have full access to enter all Kwik’pak facilities in Emmonak, Kotlik, and Mountain Village. Schultheis said that the company has not yet decided how non-vaccinated individuals, like fishermen who are not employees, would enter the company’s facilities, or if they would be allowed to.