Industry participants, government and non-government partners today announced the launch of a Fisheries Improvement Project (FIP) for Units 1 and 2 redfish in Canada’s Gulf of St. Lawrence and Laurentian Channel.
Historically, redfish fisheries in Units 1 and 2 achieved combined annual catches of 100,000 tonnes. That ended in the early 1990s when this over-exploited stock complex entered an extended period of low productivity.
But by 2020, new recruits that exploded onto the scene in 2011-13 will begin to achieve maturity and commercial size. “We want to optimize the benefits of a sustainable resource for quota holders who have been waiting a long time for this positive development,” explained Bruce Chapman, president of the Groundfish Enterprise Allocation Council (GEAC).
Chapman added, “Through this FIP, we will have a disciplined approach and strategy towards this re-emerging fishery. We will monitor, evaluate and manage aspects of the fishery that we weren’t really concerned about in the 1990s, including the two different redfish species occupying this area, mitigating catch of smaller fish, reducing incidental catch, and avoiding impact on coral and sponge concentrations.”
“SFP supports this industry-led FIP and is pleased with the work of GEAC and cooperating organizations in implementing this important and timely project,” said Jim Cannon, CEO and founder of the Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP). “The redfish fishery in this area has the potential to become one of Atlantic Canada’s largest groundfish fisheries within very few years”
The Groundfish Enterprise Allocation Council is a non-profit association representing large vessel groundfish license holders in Atlantic Canada. GEAC contributes to research that will improve the sustainability and management of groundfish fisheries by actively supporting science, sustainability certifications and responsible management.
The SFP is a non-profit organization dedicated to protecting seafood supplies and livelihoods while achieving environmentally sustainable fisheries and fish farming. SFP works with businesses to identify the challenges in seafood sourcing and catalyze practical improvements while also maintaining a global public database of fishery information.