Aug. 25, 2005
ST. GEORGE (CNB) - Trevor Taylor, Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture for the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador, is spending two days in New Brunswick touring the province's aquaculture industry in the Bay of Fundy.
The visit is part of a commitment to greater exchanges and co-operation between the two jurisdictions in the areas of commercial fisheries and aquaculture development.
"I am pleased to have the opportunity to host Minister Taylor in our province, and to provide him with a first-hand look at the success New Brunswick has experienced in the development of finfish aquaculture over the past two decades," Agriculture, Fisheries and Aquaculture Minister David Alward said. "The aquaculture industry has a great future in Atlantic Canada, and New Brunswick is open to sharing its knowledge and expertise in this sector with other Atlantic jurisdictions."
While in New Brunswick, Taylor will visit, among others, the Supreme Sturgeon and Cooke aquaculture operations in St. George, the Connors fish processing plant in Black's Harbour, and the St. Andrews Biological Station.
"The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador is committed to supporting and developing the aquaculture industry in the province," Taylor said. "With only 10 per cent of our available water for aquaculture development currently being used, we see a great potential in aquaculture for our coastal communities and rural economies. Given the potential throughout Atlantic Canada in this sector, it's important that the provinces work together to create a positive climate for the growth of the industry in the region.
The two ministers are currently working with the Canadian Council of Fisheries and Aquaculture Ministers on securing an Aquaculture Framework Agreement, similar to what exists for the agriculture sector, to assist in the development of the aquaculture industry.
The aquaculture industry in Newfoundland and Labrador had an export value last year of $22 million, and employed about 500 people.
Aquatic farming in Canada has grown significantly over the past 20 years. The industry is currently generating economic activity in the order of $1 billion per year in Canada. In 2001, aquaculture accounted for 12.7 per cent of seafood production and represented 25.2 per cent of the value of the Canadian seafood sector.
The salmon aquaculture industry started in Atlantic Canada in the Bay of Fundy in 1979. Over the next 26 years, the finfish industry has expanded to generate $295 million in sales in 2003 and provide employment for 3,400 people in Atlantic Canada's rural and coastal communities.
MEDIA CONTACTS: Tyler Campbell, Communications New Brunswick, 506-444-5655; Tracy Barron, Newfoundland and Labrador Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture, 709-729-3733.