Editorial 111 results

Volatility Would be an Understatement

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines irony as “the use of words to express something other than and especially the opposite of the literal meaning.” On February 16 of this year, just two days after Valentine’s Day, the Fish, Food and Allied Workers Union (FFAW) and the Association of Seafood Producers (ASP) held a surprising, joint press conference to announce their mutual cooperation for the upcoming 2023 snow crab season. Newly-minted FFAW President Greg Pretty and Secretary-T...

Never Underestimate the Importance of Stability

American theologian and author William G.T. Shedd once wrote “A ship is safe in harbour, but that’s not what ships are for.” The May issue of The Navigator is always devoted to highlighting the inherent dangers faced by fishermen today, as well as practices and technology aimed at making it safer. As has been the practice for the last few years, The Navigator’s editorial has opened with the names of fishermen that have been lost at sea. This year, due to the release of the recent ...

Combatting Seafood Processing Worker Shortages

The seafood industry in Atlantic Canada has an ongoing problem and it has nothing to do with quotas or fish prices. The issue of course is lack of workers and unfortunately for processors around the region, this problem is showing no signs of getting better. And if you listen to some stakeholders, it is only going to continue to get worse before it gets better. So, how do you start to make it better? A few years ago, The Navigator highlighted a 2019 study by Food Processing Skills Canada ...

IUU Fishing: Far From a Foreign Problem

With everything going in the fishery throughout Atlantic Canada, oftentimes, it is hard to take a step back and look at the global fishing picture — after all, don’t we have enough to worry about here? However, once and while, it is a worthwhile practice to pause for a second and compare our various fisheries here with others being prosecuted around the world. While we always have our issues, for the most part, our commercial fisheries are well run, with conservation and the future top ...

From Rhetoric to Real Issues

A little over a year ago, The Navigator took a deep dive into the mandate letter of newly appointed Minister of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) and Canadian Coast Guard Joyce Murray. A mandate letter sets the table for the work and legislation each federal minister is expected to prioritize by their boss, the Prime Minister. After a quick peruse of Minister Murray’s mandate letter, three key points dominated the Prime Minster’s marching orders: climate, the environment and Indigenous ...

2022: A Year Not for the Record Books

As 2022 is fading out of sight in the rearview mirror, we are left shaking our collective heads thinking, what a difference a few months can make. In March of this year, the world was emerging from the COVID-19 pandemic and despite inflationary increases, things were looking up — especially for the commercial fishery in this region. At the time, lobster fishermen in lobster fishing areas (LFAs) 33–34 off Nova Scotia were getting north of $16/pound for their catches. For their brethren ...

Collective Bargaining Report a Small Step Forward

Aristotle once wrote, “How many a dispute could have been deflated into a single paragraph if the disputants had dared to define their terms.” After an embattled 2022 fishing season, with accusations flying like ocean spray in the wind, the Newfoundland and Labrador government did make an attempt to define the possible causes of this year’s harvester/processor disputes in the fishery. On July 21, N.L. Labour Minister Bernard Davis announced an independent review of the collective ...

Whale Worries: Could AIS Tags be the Answer?

If there was ever any debate before, the question is now unequivocally answered, the Monterey Bay Aquarium is officially off Atlantic Canada’s Christmas card list. As if the lobster and snow crab industries in this region were not already having a challenging enough season, in early September, the California-based Monterey Bay Aquarium really stepped up to add insult to injury. As part of its Seafood Watch Program, the organization arbitrarily added American lobster and Canadian snow ...

What’s the Problem with Pelagics?

What is going on with the once plentiful and lucrative pelagics fisheries in Atlantic Canada? Fishermen is this region of the Northwest Atlantic have been harvesting herring, mackerel, capelin and squid, for both food and all-important bait, for centuries. In fact, the multi-billion-dollar lobster and snow crab fisheries would never have developed into the monster industries they are today without the use of lowly pelagics as bait. Even today, as many companies are foraging and research...

The By-Products of Warming Waters

“I’m glad it’s finally hot enough to complain about how hot it is.” Atlantic Canadians love and hate their weather. For generations, due to our specific geography, the weather has always been the number one topic of conversation. Lately, nearly all conversations have centred on the oppressive heat. Almost every region of Atlantic Canada, from Comfort Cove to Canso to Crapaud to Caraquet, have reported record high temperatures this summer. “Hotter than a two-dollar pistol,” ...