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Cooke Seafood buys Icicle

The Cooke family, owners of Cooke Seafood USA, which includes Wanchese Fish Co. in Suffolk, has announced the purchase of Icicle Seafoods Inc.

This deal enhances the family’s investments in both the wild fishery and the aquaculture sectors, making them leaders in the U.S. salmon farming sector and a major player in the Alaskan salmon fishery, according to a press release from the company.

“This deal is an exciting venture for us as it adds a well-respected fishery to our family businesses,” said Glenn Cooke, president of Cooke Seafood Inc. “We have tremendous respect for the Alaska fishery and its highly valued brand in the seafood marketplace.”

The deal includes Icicle’s three business units, which harvest and process more than 150,000 metric tons of seafood annually: wild salmon, groundfish and farmed Atlantic salmon. Cooke already has salmon operations in Maine, and Canada. The addition of the Washington operations will make it the only company in the world that farms salmon while holding a significant market position in wild salmon, company officials said.

“The Icicle team is excited about the opportunity to join the Cooke family of companies and to be able to focus on the expansion of our footprint in Alaska,” says Christopher Ruettgers, chief executive officer of Icicle Seafoods Inc.

“Cooke provides Icicle with a long-term owner that is dedicated to the seafood industry.”

With the acquisition of Icicle Seafoods Inc. the Cooke group of companies will produce more than 275,000 metric tons of seafood annually and generate $1.8 billion in annual sales, according to the company’s release.