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P.E.I. Lobster Industry Looking To Marketing Levy For Future

The Prince Edward Island lobster industry is trying to take fate into its own hands. A plebiscite has been set for March 2015, in which members of the P.E.I. Fishermen’s Association (PEIFA) will decide whether to create a commodity board for the resource. It’s a first step towards their ultimate goal of collecting a one cent per-pound levy from the catch and using the proceeds to market their product. It’s nothing less than a historic attempt by the industry to take a more active ...

FFAW President Outlines Union’s Key Priorities

The new president of the Fish, Food and Allied Workers (FFAW-Unifor) is not wasting any time in outlining his priorities for the powerful Newfoundland and Labrador union. Keith Sullivan spoke about his mandate during a recent interview with The Navigator. While there are many issues currently facing the FFAW, fair access to adjacent resources is at the top of the list, the labour leader explained. “Most people are aware of the difficulties we have facing us with the northern shrimp. If ...

Membership Drive Begins for Fledgling N.S. Lobster Association

Bernie Berry feels deeply about lobster fishing and he wears that feeling on his sleeve. He started fishing when he was 19 and still skippers a lobster boat today although he sold his own rig a few years back. Berry became concerned about LFA 34 fishermen not being at the table during important meetings concerning the industry’s future, after the LFA 34 Lobster Advisory Group, a fishermen-DFO partnership, sort of fizzled last summer. “We weren’t at the table in Halifax during ...

Fishing Fatalities Continue to be Major Concern For TSB

The high number of accidents involving loss of life on fishing vessels remains one of the key priorities for the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB). Commercial fishing industry fatalities was one of eight significant safety issues identified by the TSB in its 2014 Watchlist — released in late November of last year. According to the TSB Watchlist, an average of 134 fishing vessel accidents per year were reported between 2009 and 2013 in Canada, which together comprised 40 per ...

Steady Lobster Landings off SW Nova Scotia

Prices Currently in the $5/Pound Range Reports indicate lobster landings in LFA 34 have not been as good as last year, but harvesters in LFA 33, 35, 36 and 38 are performing well. The weather played havoc with days at sea, well into the new year. Prices also weren’t as high as anticipated considering the demise of the Canadian dollar — a good 10 cents from a year ago - and the burgeoning Asian market for lobsters. The opening was delayed in LFA 34, which was probably a good thing ...

Another Successful North Atlantic Fish and Workboat Show

Three New NL Inductees Welcomed into the Atlantic Canada Marine Industries Hall of Fame Oil and gas, fish processors, commercial fisheries and aquaculture were just some of the industries represented at the 2014 edition of the North Atlantic Fish and Workboat Show, held November 28-29 at Mile One Centre in St. John’s. This year’s show marked the fourth biennial edition of this all-encompassing commercial marine event. A broad exhibitor base showcased new and innovative products to 3,177 ...

P.E.I. Lobster Industry Finishes MSC Certification

The Prince Edward Island seafood industry announced in November it has completed the MSC (Marine Stewardship Council) certification for lobster. The certification is essential because domestically larger food retail companies such as Sobeys, Loblaws, Whole Food and Walmart now have requirements for all seafood to be sourced from sustainable fisheries. MSC is one of the third-party eco certification standards. The MSC certification of the P.E.I. lobster trap fishery was the result of the ...

Atlantic Charger Living up to Expectations

Captain Brad Watkins has had more than a year to reflect on the performance of his new vessel, the Atlantic Charger and he really likes what he has seen to date. In mid-July, 2013, the Atlantic Charger was launched — a versatile 68.5-foot multi-species vessel, designed by TriNav Marine Design and built by Val Cull of Northern Boat Building and Repair in Port Saunders. The Atlantic Charger has a bulbous bow, a nozzle, fuel efficiency components and the first autopilot system of its kind to ...

Bluefin Quota Increase Could Mean Additional $2 Million for Atlantic Fishermen

Things were a bit different at an ICCAT (International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas) meeting in Italy in November. A change in the make-up of the U.S. delegation meant support for tuna fishing quota increases. At previous meetings, the U.S. delegation was led by a former employee of the PEW Foundation, a group dead-set against any quotas for bluefins, although scientific advice and fishermen lobbied heavily for increases. The major factor in the decision for the ...

High Winds Delay LFA 33-34 Openings

Early Prices in $4/Pound Range Sometimes Mother Nature works in your favour. Lobster harvesters had been going through a rough time price-wise for a few years when a vote was taken a year ago last fall to delay the opening of the LFA 33-34 fishery by one week. The theory was it would enable the shells to harden and prevent a glut of sub-par lobsters on the market which depress prices. The motion was narrowly defeated but the weather turned cold and windy for that first week so mission ...