The company that is now leasing the former Chicken of the Sea Samoa Packing Plant in American Samoa says adding fresh tuna processing to its list of operations will support the local fishing industry.
Samoa Tuna Processors, which is owned by Tri Marine, is now ready to process fresh tuna to be shipped to major markets on the US mainland.
The Vice-president of production for Tri Marine, Dan Sullivan, says although the main focus for Samoa Tuna Processors is on tuna canning, the business will also be processing fresh fish.
"What it allows us to do is participate in another part of the market. It also provides an opportunity for the local vessels here that are not really of the size to produce quantities for cannery processing, so really an opportunity for the local vessels and some of those that are long line vessels that can bring in some high quality fish near the end of their trip and sell it as fresh."
Dan Sullivan says Tri Marine will be conducting major renovations to the plant in order to improve the efficienty and hygiene of its tuna processing.