Crab Processing Jobs – King Crab, Opilio Crab and Bairdi
Increasing numbers of crab boats are being converted to catcher/processors. These boats are usually large, steel-hulled monsters of well over 100 feet, employing a standard five-person crew plus many additional workers to process the meat from king crabs, opilio and bairdi crabs. The harvesting method differs little from those used by regular crab boats, but once the traps are hauled aboard, the crabs are stored in live tanks, sorted, split, gilled, cooked, bagged, and frozen. Like factory trawlers, crab catcher/processors sometimes buy other boats’ hauls and process them in addition to their own. Often the entire crew shares all jobs, depending on what needs to be done.
These catcher/processors offer a great opportunity if you want to work during the winter months, when the salmon fishery is closed. It’s pretty easy to find a crabbing job (especially crab processing in Dutch Harbor/Unalaska) by applying about a month before their season begins in November or December, or even calling immediately before the season.