Meet the Kramers. An Alaskan family, making a life for themselves by pursuing their passions. With their business, Straight to the Plate, their mission is to serve the highest quality, healthy, sustainable, and wild protein source that Alaska has to offer. Delivering the freshest wild-caught Alaskan salmon straight to your plate!
When they’re not catching salmon, Kurtis and Emma maintain their off-the-grid homestead just outside the Girdwood Valley. 20 Years ago, as they were starting a family, Kurtis built their home from trees on the property and help from their neighbors. Over the years, he and Emma have raised their kids with a frontier experience and adventurous spirit. The self-reliant values this family lives by, carry over from their home life to their fishing business.
Both Kurtis and Emma grew up in Wisconsin. Each led by their own dreams of the Last Frontier, they arrived in Alaska separately and met in Girdwood in 1999. Kurtis had been exploring the Prince Willliam Sounds and navigating some of Alaska’s rivers and Emma’s first summer was spent processing salmon in Naknek, a job that set her up with money to rent a place in the small ski town of Girdwood, where she met Kurtis.
Neither of them had a plan to go into the fishing industry, but for both of them, salmon had entered their bloodstream, and it became a part of the Alaska traditions they would create. In 2012, after spending a few years set netting with his brother, Kurtis stood on the shore watching the gill netters reel in their salmon catch, filling their boats and motoring on to lay their net somewhere else. At that moment he knew he wanted to be a gill netter.
Now, as the Captain of their boat, the F/V Emma Grace, Kurtis has a commercial salmon permit for the Copper River District. This rich marine habitat is only 30 minutes away from the Girdwood Valley, so the Kramers can get the best of both worlds, living in the mountains as well as out at sea. Their kids, Naya (16) and Rowan (14) have grown to be a major part of the family fishing business. From Captaining the boat to helping catch, process, transport and sell their salmon, the Kramers are keeping it all in the family.