Commentary 12 results

Don’t Give Up on Snow Crab

2017 Data Says Canadian Volumes Will Come Roaring Back There are major changes in snow crab quotas projected for the Gulf of St. Lawrence in 2017. The preliminary survey data done by DFO shows significantly higher crab biomass than expected. The data will be peer reviewed in February, at which time the biomass and exploitation rates will be set. But the industry in the Gulf is talking as if it may see its highest total landings ever. The snow crab market has shot up dramatically this ...

N.B. Lobster Processors Warn of Possible Shortage of Tails This Winter

The major lobster processors in New Brunswick are concerned about a possible disconnect between what they see happening in the market this winter and the expectations of their major customers. Although the lobster meat market has been near record highs, lobster tails have traded normally and have been priced around $15 per lb. for a 4 oz tail since July. Packers say this is a good price point for retailers, but they feel it may not last, despite the fact there is still some lobster tail ...

Groundfish Forum May be Too Pessimistic on Atlantic Cod

The single biggest change in whitefish forecasts presented at the recent Groundfish Forum in Hamburg, Germany was for Barents Sea Cod, where Norwegian and Russian catches were thought to drop 11 per cent in 2017. However, closer reading of the situation suggests this might not be the case. The forecast was largely based on International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) recommendations and in 2015 the organization recommended a quota of 805,000 tonnes, while the actual TAC was ...

Icewater Seafoods Calls for Balance in Newfoundland Cod Allocations, Management

In a statement to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Fisheries and Oceans, which recently held a hearing in St. John’s, Icewater Seafoods called for a more balanced approach to the exploitation of Northern cod stocks. Icewater is the second largest holder of enterprise (greater than 100-foot vessel) allocations for Northern cod and is the company that received the cod allocations formerly belonging to Fishery Products International. When that company was split up and sold to ...

Spike in Lobster Demand Pushes Live Lobster Prices to Highest Pricing in 10 Years

Live lobster prices spiked again last month, with Urner Barry reporting prices for hardshell up 25 cents and for new shell up 50 cents, as retailers stocked up for Labour Day weekend. With hardshell at $8.50 and new shell at $6, these are the highest prices in 10 years. Demand by lobster processors is driving the price up. Two things have changed in the market. First, there are significantly more companies doing lobster processing, especially in Maine and Massachusetts. These companies ...

N.L. Snow Crab Landings Fall to 1996 Levels

Japan Cuts Purchases and Prices Spike 30 Per Cent Canadian snow crab prices are now 30 per cent higher than last year, as the Newfoundland season is done, with the exception of a couple of fishing areas outside of 200 miles. The Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) reported that 37,958 tonnes have been landed, or 89 per cent of the 42,650-tonne quota. However, nearly 3,000 tonnes of quota is in areas such as 3PS where the fishery has already closed, so total landings will be below ...

Aquaculture is in Essence a Form of Agriculture

“We must plant the sea and herd its animals using the sea as farmers instead of hunters. That is what civilization is all about — farming replacing hunting,” Jacques Yves Cousteau has stated. Agriculture is the science or practice of farming, for food, other crops and livestock for human use. The United Nations and its 195 member states comprising most of the world’s population, define aquaculture as the farming of aquatic plants and animals. Farming itself is defined as the ...

CETA Deal Could Fall Apart Under Pressure of Brexit

The EU Commission is deciding how the free trade deal between the EU and Canada will be ratified. Since the Brexit vote, the conditions have shifted markedly. Until recently, this was considered a done deal that would give a significant boost to Canadian exports, particularly of shrimp, lobster and crab. Now the deal may not happen as the EU struggles with the aftermath of the Brexit vote. One proposal is for the deal to take effect if it is ratified by the EU Commission and the EU ...

Northern Cod Will Need More than a FIP, it Will Need the Unity of All Stakeholders

July 2, 2017 will mark the 25th Anniversary of the cod moratorium in Newfoundland, which halted fishing on what used to be the largest single cod stock in the world. The collapse of Newfoundland’s Northern cod, which at one time provided harvests of over 800,000 tonnes per year, has been the poster child for the seafood sustainability movement. The moratorium was a dramatic shutdown of a major industry that had defined Newfoundland for over 500 years. The cod fishery was lost due to a ...

The Forgotten Fishery: Hook and Line on South West Coast of Newfoundland

This past November I visited Codroy Seafoods Inc. who were processing hook and line codfish caught by day boat fishers in area 3PN-4R. Inshore fishers were using traditional baited trawls with mackerel and herring. The majority of the fishers were also employing proper handling techniques, which included a bleeding step, gutting and slush icing. The latter short-term storage quickly chilled the fish, provided additional washing and reduced pressure because of the buoyancy offered by slush ...