Commentary 122 results

Is the Snow Crab Market a Bellwether or a Blip?

In the U.S., snow crab outperformed every other seafood product during the pandemic. Yet today, the snow crab market is crashing at the fastest pace since the spring of 1995. That year, between May 1995 and May 1996, the price fell 46 per cent. This year, Urner Barry quotations from last summer until this May are down 33 per cent and the bottom has not been set. This is already the largest percentage decline in price since 1995. Since February, the market has been going down around 50 ...

Herring Fishery in Risk Management Mode

The 2022 Atlantic Canada pelagics fishery is in a tailspin. The March 30 announcement by Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) Minister Joyce Murray that there will be no directed commercial or bait fishing for southern Gulf spring herring and a complete closure of the Atlantic mackerel commercial and bait fisheries in Atlantic Canada and Québec sent shockwaves through the fishing industry. Now, the lucrative Bay of Fundy herring industry is doing its best to avoid further quota cut bombshells and ...

Asian Seafood Markets Impacted by Russia-Ukraine War

The war between Russia and Ukraine has exerted great influence on different sectors of the global market. One victim has been seafood industries worldwide. Russia has spent great efforts in seafood promotion within recent years and it has been rising in prominence. Russian seafood exports have increased by 33.7 per cent to US$7 billion in 2021, according to the Russian Federal Agency for Fishery. But now everything has been disrupted. In the face of war sanctions, seafood trade between ...

The NLGIDC Wants to Know What Happened to the Lumpfish Resource?

What happened to Newfoundland and Labrador lumpfish? “For years we had a viable fishery for lump roe in this province, then during the past 10 years we have been lucky to produce 500 barrels annually,” says Paul Grant, the executive vice-president of Beothic Fish Processors Ltd., based in Valleyfield, N.L. For many years the fishery for lump roe provided an economic contribution to inshore harvesters and processors alike in Newfoundland and Labrador. The fishery began in the early ...

Are Whale Management Measures Levelling Off?

Have the federal government’s recent actions to help protect endangered North Atlantic right whales from fishing gear entanglements and collisions with vessels been working? For now, they appear to be. The Departments of Fisheries, Oceans (DFO) and Transport announced in March that for two successive years, there have been no reported right whale deaths in Canadian waters. This positive news was part of the federally mandated right whale fishery and vessel management measures for the ...

Seals Are Wreaking Absolute Havoc Off Our Shores

The environmental movement has gained significant strength over the last decade as discourse surrounding climate change and carbon emissions come into play for seemingly every economic, social and political issue we are faced with. But as we focus on how to live more sustainably to protect the earth for future generations, a troubling trend is emerging and it’s having unintended consequences on true sustainability. Greenwashing is the process of conveying a false impression or providing ...

DFO Continues Inaction on Category B Lobster Licences

Three years ago, we began our campaign to reverse the outdated “Moonlighter Policy” that targets Category B lobster licence holders in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and P.E.I. In that time, our efforts have consistently been met with delays and an unwillingness to address the issue from DFO. The 50-year-old policy was introduced by Fisheries and Oceans Canada as an attempt to remove people from the fishery as a conservation method. The policy achieved this by targeting fishermen who held ...

Anti-Russia Sanctions Could Hit Crab, Groundfish with Price Volatility

On February 24, Russia mounted a full-scale invasion of Ukraine, dashing any lingering hopes of a smaller-scale, more contained event. In the build-up to this conflict, the U.S. has managed to forge a stronger united front with Western Europe than most expected. Germany’s decision to suspend the Nordstream 2 gas pipeline, which will lead to sharply higher energy prices in Europe and elsewhere, is a measure of how seriously the Western governments are taking the invasion. Sanctions are ...

Seeing Red Over Lobster Fishery Proposal

From all reports, the lobster season in this region is chugging along and is on par with last year. Speaking of last season, the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) recently reported that lobster fishing areas (LFAs) 33 and 34 recorded landings of 27,395 tonnes, for an approximate landed value of $515 million. That total equates to a whopping 62 per cent of total Canadian landings of lobster. There is no doubt that these are exciting times for the lobster fishery in Southwest Nova ...

2021 Was Fantastic for Seafood as Disruption Played to Our Strengths

The seafood industry is coming off a fantastic year, despite the turmoil and disruption of the pandemic. First, some numbers. When I went to analyze what happened with the U.S. seafood supply in 2021, I was blown away by our success. Using the data through October as a proxy for the year, we imported 4.2 billion pounds, six per cent over the volume of 2020 and 11 per cent over the volume of 2019. The value of these imports was up a staggering 24 per cent from their values in 2020. De...