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Work Together or Hang Separately, it is That Simple

Above: Lonnie Snow photo   Two qualities that give the seafood industry its unique character are being made up of a multitude of diverse companies of all sizes and having an immense diversity of species and products. In the U.S. meat industry, four companies control 84 per cent of beef production, 65 per cent of pork production, 53 per cent of poultry and one dairy co-op and one processor control 30 per cent and 40 per cent respectively of the national milk supply. Our compan...

Processors Now Key to Lobster and Crab Survival in Canada

Above: Kathy Johnson photo This month, economic impacts of the coronavirus pandemic will become more visible and the success or failure of economic decisions will have a big impact on our lives, as much as the success or failure of pandemic containment actions. The big money fisheries in Atlantic Canada are lobster and snow crab and how these fisheries navigate the next few months will be critical to the survival of many shore communities and small businesses. We need to prepare ...

Industry Must Prepare as COVID-19 Changing Supply Chain Behaviour

With the spread of the coronavirus to new countries, I now believe the seafood industry is going to face its worst crisis since the economic collapse of 2008. That was difficult and frightening enough. From October to December of 2008, fresh whole salmon prices dropped 20 per cent. From August 2008 to January 2009, shrimp prices in the Urner Barry farmed shrimp index fell 16 per cent. Cod loins, which were at record prices in November of 2008, fell 34 per cent over the next 11 months, in ...

Fisheries Science Failures on Full Display in 3Ps Cod Projections

Cod still remains “fish” in Newfoundland and Labrador, but the optimism of growing cod stocks in the past few years has been tempered. Newfoundland once had one of the world’s great cod stocks on the Grand Banks and in the 2J-3K NAFO area off the northeast coast of Newfoundland and off Labrador. According to George Rose of Memorial University, one of the world’s foremost scientists on Atlantic cod, the collapse of the stock in the early 1990s was precipitated when most of the ...

As the Decade Ends, What Battles Will the Industry Face Over the Next 10 Years

Above: David Greening photo New Year’s Day 2020 offered a good chance to think about how the next 10 years may be different for the seafood industry. If you think back to where we were in 2010, it is quite different than where we are today. Ten years ago, certification was still controversial. The MSC was about to decertify Alaska salmon. Retailers were facing a multiplicity of certifications and ratings and the shrimp industry with BAP and the tuna industry with International ...

Can We Stop IUU Fishing by Thinking Outside the Box?

Above: Participants at the recent International Coldwater Prawn Forum held in St. John's, N.L. Campaigns against illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing by both the industry and environmentalists continually run up against a problem: government enforcement. Enforcement is not as much of an issue for rich countries with well-developed fisheries management systems and strong enforcement histories. In these cases, when IUU fishing happens, it can be successfully exposed, ...

What’s Going Right with Pollock

The single largest American fishery by volume, Alaska pollock, is having a banner year — and it is no accident. The pollock industry is one of the most efficient producers of protein on the planet, yet three years ago the industry was in crisis. Pollock prices were at their lowest level since 2005 and there were huge inventories of product in Europe largely due to the discount wars on pollock initiated as Pacific Andes struggled and Russian competitors were ramping up to produce single ...

High-Tech Cod Acoustic Tracking Project Underway off N.L.

Atlantic Canada’s interest in developing high-tech ocean industries and its traditional groundfish industry is coming together in a project recently announced in St. John’s, N.L. aimed at improving tracking of Northern cod. The Association of Seafood Producers and the Atlantic Groundfish Council announced an $8.5-million Northern cod acoustic tracking (NCAT) project. The project is part of a Northern cod fisheries improvement program (FIP) that was launched in 2015 in NAFO divisions 2J, ...

The Fisheries Problem from Hell: Right Whales and Gear Entanglement

The North Atlantic right whale population is hovering at the brink of failure, with around 400 surviving individuals. In some years, there has been some population increase and in other years not. But the fact is that unintentional killing of right whales through both ship strikes and gear entanglements is preventing the population from increasing to a safer level and exacerbating the risk the entire species will go extinct. Although the population increased between 1990 and 2010, since ...

New Fisheries Law a Step Forward, but Won’t Resolve Conflicts

The new Canadian Fisheries Act is a long overdue modernization that clearly helps fix some management issues with Canadian fisheries, but also enshrines into law some of the problematic aspects of Canadian ocean protection efforts. With the third reading of the fisheries bill under the Canadian system, the bill will now quickly become law once signed by the governor general, the Queen’s representative in Canada. The major changes in the bill are as follows: Reverses the Harper ...