Tag Archives: Snow crab

Snow crab market heats up with Record-Breaking Prices in northern Cape Breton

Soaring demand from the U.S. has resulted in snow crab coming in at over $8 a pound. The price was closer to $4.25 this time last year. Dave Donovan fishes out of Neils Harbour on board the Krista & Megan. “Eight dollars is a big bonus,” he said. “I guess it’s the best price I’ve ever seen since I’ve been in the fishery.” Donovan said the hot market this year is welcomed by all on the wharf, and in the processing plant. The high price is a surprise to Osborne Burke, “We didn’t anticipate this,” >click to read< 14:14

FFAW submits a request for Snow Crab price review in Newfoundland and Labrador

The Fish Food and Allied Workers has submitted a request for reconsideration of snow crab prices to the Standing Fish Price Setting Panel for Newfoundland and Labrador,,, FFAW said the panel has 96 hours to either establish a new price or maintain the current price of $5.73 per pound. If the panel decides to set a new price, it would come into effect Sunday. April 25. Crab fishers in Newfoundland and Labrador have questioned the apparent gap in snow crab prices from province-to-province in Atlantic Canada.  They’ve been sharing information that suggests snow crab fishers in the Maritime provinces have been getting $8 to $9 per pound for crab. >click to read< 18:42

N.L. fishers crabby over Snow Crab prices

Since last week they’ve taken to social media to rant about an apparently-large gap in prices between Nova Scotia and N.L. and chew out the Fish Food and Allied Workers (FFAW) union for failing to negotiate a better price. According to a post by Ryan Cleary on April 9, Nova Scotia buyers were offering $8 a pound for crab, while N.L. harvesters are fishing crab for $5.73 a pound. That’s the price set by the Fish Price Setting Panel, who chose the price suggested by the FFAW.  “What’s clear is the price setting panel does not work and it’s costing Newfoundland fishermen millions,” stated Cleary, who led the former FISH-NL group in an attempt by some inshore harvesters to break away from the FFAW. >click to read< 07:59

Crab fishing season off to early start on the Acadian Peninsula

New Brunswick’s snow crab fishers have begun their season. At the wharf in Shippagan, boats prepared to take to the Gulf of Saint Lawrence late Friday despite frigid temperatures and the presence of ice in some places. The season officially began at midnight. For Capt. Renald Guignard, it marked the continuation of a family tradition. The Acadian Peninsula received help from icebreakers from the Canadian Coast Guard and contracted boats to allow access to the waters before endangered North Atlantic right whales arrive. >click to read< 17:30

2021 Newfoundland and Labrador Snow crab quotas going up by 29 per cent

Today, the Honourable Bernadette Jordan, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans, and the Canadian Coast Guard, announced that the 2021 Snow crab fishery in Newfoundland and Labrador will have a total allowable catch (TAC) of 38,186 tonnes.“Our government understands how important the Snow crab fishery in Newfoundland and Labrador is to the provincial economy, and to rural and coastal communities. After taking steps in recent years to protect the health of the Snow crab population and ensure long term sustainability of the stock, I am very pleased to share that, for 2021, the total allowable catch will be increasing across nearly the whole province. >click to read< 10:22

Icebreakers are clearing the way for early Snow crab season with less risk for right whales

New Brunswick’s lucrative snow crab industry is just weeks away from a head start to the season, could result in higher revenue and less risk for North Atlantic right whales. Icebreakers from the Canadian Coast Guard and contracted boats began clearing the waters near Shippagan and Caraquet on the Acadian Peninsula over the weekend. Gilles Thériault, who lives in Tracadie, said fishermen are thankful for the icebreakers. “The quicker we catch our quota, the less danger there is of whales being trapped into ropes,” he said. “We hope that the vast majority of the quota will be caught before the whales arrive.” >click to read< 15:43

Good news for Newfoundland fishermen, plant workers, and processors in the snow crab fishery

The snow crab fishery should continue to be an economic bright spot for the Newfoundland and Labrador economy in 2021. The latest report from Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) science shows modest improvements in snow crab biomass in several fishing zones around the province. The good news from science is that the snow crab stocks appear to be recovering in some areas.,, Julia Pantin, DFO’s lead biologist for snow crab in the Newfoundland region, said the population of crabs becoming available to the fishery is expected to increase over the new two to four years in most areas. >click to read< 11:30

The Biggest Hauls Ever Made on Deadliest Catch

When most people think of fishing, they immediately envision a serene and relaxing activity,,, However, that image changed for a lot of people in 2005 when Deadliest Catch debuted on the Discovery Channel. The series follows crab fisherman as they venture out into the ocean in search of Alaskan king crab and snow crab. The fishermen often have to brave harsh weather and intense storms and the job can quite literally turn deadly in just a matter of seconds. At the same time, however, the reward that comes with huge hauls makes many people feel like the job is worth it. So, just how big can these hauls be? >click to read<13:50

Nova Scotia Supreme Court approves sale of Clearwater Seafoods

It is the final step in a deal described as “the single largest investment in the seafood industry by any Indigenous group in Canada.” On Thursday, shareholders voted in favour of the sale to a partnership of Premium Brands of British Columbia and a coalition of Mi’kmaw First Nations led by the Membertou band of Nova Scotia and the Miawpukek in Newfoundland and Labrador. Court approval for the mega deal took 20 minutes. >click to read< 18:40

FFAW, processors remain at odds on opening Newfoundland and Labrador crab season

It remains to be seen whether harvesters in the province will eventually start fishing for crab and offloading it at plants for processing. According to the Fish, Food and Allied Workers (FFAW-Unifor), two vessels from outside the province were turned away in Port Aux Basques and denied the opportunity to offload crab as of Monday morning, and three transport trucks carrying crab harvested outside the province were being blocked from making deliveries to fish plants, two in South Brook and one at Goobies. “The fishery was postponed three times on health and safety issues,” Pretty said. “During that time, the bargaining for the price of crab should have progressed, but instead of progressing,,, >click to read< 19:46

Coronavirus: FFAW calling for delay of crab fishery, NL-FHSA released 12 control measures to prevent spread of virus on fishing vessels

The FFAW’s crab committee chairs met Sunday and voted to delay the fishery opening again. President Keith Sullivan said the recommendation will be sent to the Department of Fisheries and Oceans, who holds the authority to open or delay the fishery. “We have to be able to ensure that we have a safe fishery for everyone involved,” Still, Sullivan said harvesters aren’t ready to call off the 2020 crab fishing season, which employs thousands and is worth more than $300 million, including export value and spin offs.,, Meanwhile, The Fish Harvesting Safety Association (NL-FHSA) has released 12 control measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 on fishing vessels, if fisheries open later this spring. >click to read< 18:14

Coronavirus: Concerns raised about pending Cheticamp snow crab fishery

Setting day for the lucrative fishery is Friday and it runs until June 30. “Residents of Cheticamp are really scared and upset about the coming of the crab fishery,” Cheticamp resident Yolande LeVert said.  “I’m not sure what’s happening here, I don’t know why there is not more communication with the residents of Cheticamp. Are there rules on the wharf when the fishermen come in for the ones that unload the boats?” ,, LeVert noted the snow crab fishery will see more than 30 boats arrive from around the Gulf of Saint Lawrence, mainly from New Brunswick and Quebec, for the Zone 12F snow crab fishery. That equates to about 120 fishermen, in addition to dozens of plant workers, many of whom arrive from Mexico. >click to read< 08:35

Feds delay Snow Crab season in Gulf of St. Lawrence

The Department of Fisheries and Oceans said the decision on Thursday to pause the season will let everyone involved in the fishery to put necessary health and safety measures in place. Seafood processors in the Maritimes had called on Ottawa to delay the crab and lobster season, warning that moving ahead with fishing risks workers’ health — and the bottom line — amid the COVID-19 pandemic.,, New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs said Thursday the province hopes Fisheries and Oceans Canada will delay the spring season for a few weeks, with the possibility of federal compensation. The Maritime Fishermen’s Union, which represents 1,200 harvesters in New Brunswick, said Friday they support a delay of the lobster season until May 15 >click to read< 16:28

‘Deadliest Catch’ Captains Discuss What Happened In F/V Destination Tragedy – Sig encourages re-evaluation

It’s no secret that crab fishing is the most dangerous job in the world, and that is why Deadliest Catch fans hero worship the captains and crew that star on this adventurous reality series. On February 11, 2017 the Destination sunk. What happened to this crab fishing vessel and what have the Deadliest Catch captains said about the boat and crew?,,, Although the Destination was not part of the Discovery show, the captain and crew were friends with the captains of the reality show. >click to read< 10:50

Emotional ‘Deadliest Catch’ captain Sig Hansen still haunted by friend lost at sea – Hansen is encouraging all the boats in the community to re-evaluate their boats so that tragedies like the F/V Destination don’t happen again. And while the sinking is a painful memory for Sig, he believes the awareness it has garnered will save lives for years to come. >click to read<

First Nation in New Brunswick demands DFO allow access to crab fishery

The chief of the Eel Ground First Nation in northeastern New Brunswick is calling on the federal government to honour treaty rights and allow access to the snow crab fishery. Chief George Ginnish says the community, also known as Natoaganeg, has been waiting for 20 years to exercise their rights. He says the band council authorized a treaty fishery for snow crab, but the Department of Fisheries and Oceans has seized their traps.,, AFN Regional Chief Roger Augustine said the DFO has seized 31 snow crab pots so far. He’s asking Fisheries and Oceans Minister Jonathan Wilkinson step in,,, “It is disturbing to me and does not make sense that a First Nation would be given a licence but no quotas,” Augustine said. >click to read<22:54

Overall 9% snow crab quota decrease, but one area gets 48% boost

A snow crab fisher on the south coast of Newfoundland is happy to hear that his area is getting a 48 per cent quota increase for this upcoming season. The Department of Fisheries and Oceans released its decision on Wednesday, which outlined an overall nine per cent decrease for the catch. Fishers will get $5.38 a pound for their catch, as well, the price suggestion put forward by the union. Calvin Young, who fishes in the 3Ps area and lands his catch in Branch, said he’s happy to see the big quota boost for his area, but it’s not as big as it sounds. >click to read<15:55

FISH-NL takes stand against precautionary approach management system for snow crab; ‘inshore harvesters don’t want it’

The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) has taken a stand against the implementation of the so-called ‘precautionary approach’ management system in the commercial snow crab fishery. “The message is loud and clear from all coasts — inshore harvesters don’t want it,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL. “Fishermen say the management system that’s in place now works well enough, and follows the normal cyclical nature of the stock.” The precautionary approach would have three levels or zones of classification — critical, healthy and cautious, with talks are ongoing between DFO and the FFAW-Unifor on setting the reference points dividing each category. FISH-NL is against the introduction of the precautionary approach altogether. >click to read<17:20

Marine Stewardship Council not convinced a single season with no whale deaths means fishery is sustainable

Despite a year when no North Atlantic right whales died in the Gulf of St. Lawrence, the snow crab fishery has not won back its certification from a marine stewardship group. The Marine Stewardship Council has extended the suspension of its “sustainable” fishing certification for New Brunswick crab products by another year. The council suspended its certification last March after 12 right whales were found dead in the Gulf of St. Lawrence in 2017. At least two deaths were linked to entanglements in snow-crab fishing gear. Last season, the federal government instituted widespread fishing closures and shipping-speed limitations. Although there were no deaths, three whales were still entangled in snow crab gear. >click to read<23:50

Latest DFO assessment of NL snow crab presents a ‘mixed bag’ of stock health

The Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) released its stock assessment for snow crab Tuesday, Feb. 26 and overall it was described as a “mixed bag.” According to information provided in a technical briefing, there are modest increases in overall exploitable biomass of snow crab but it is near its lowest observed level since the mid 1990’s. DFO crab scientist Dr. Krista Baker did point out there is a return to cooler waters, which is a positive sign going for the stocks. >click to read<18:14

FISH-NL accuses FFAW of fake outrage and hypocrisy over new snow crab management strategy

The federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) held meetings earlier this week in St. John’s, Clarenville, and Gander to consult inshore harvesters on a proposed new management strategy for snow crab. The so-called Precautionary Approach includes stock status zones such as critical, cautious and healthy, as well as reference points and harvesters control rules. A huge contingent of FFAW-Unifor executive members slammed DFO at the public meetings for blindsiding inshore harvesters, accusing the department of bringing them into the discussion at a “late stage.” >click to read<

Axed jobs and closed plants loom, warn crab harvesters about new management approach

Fishing businesses are on the line if the Department of Fisheries and Oceans implements a new management system for snow crab, says Port de Grave harvester. “Bankrupt … plant workers will lose their jobs. Plants will definitely close. Fishermen are definitely bankrupt,,, I’d say 80 per cent of the industry is bankrupt,” said Brad Doyle.,,, “We’ve had environmental issues that weren’t taken into account,” says fisher Brad Doyle. Fishers like Doyle want to known what impact other fish species and the growing population of harp seals is having on snow crab. >click to read<21:49

N.L. crab fishers taken aback by DFO’s latest details on crab data

Alfred Fitzpatrick says it seems the opinions of fish harvesters aren’t carrying much weight with the science branch of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) as of late. “We always thought we had a pretty good relationship with DFO Science – when it come to crab anyways, cod is another story,” said the Garnish-based fishermen, who represents harvesters from the Burin Peninsula in crab fishing areas 10 and 11 on the Fish, Food and Allied Workers (FFAW-Unifor) union’s inshore council. “It seems like now it’s changing. It’s not a good working relationship, not as good anyway, I’ll say.” >click to read<16:10

DFO warns 80% of N.L. snow crab are below fishable size

Eighty per cent of the snow crab in the province’s waters are now smaller than fishable size, and new biological research from the Department of Fisheries and Oceans says fishing pressure on the already strained stock is the main problem. “There is a major biological concern here,” said DFO biologist Darrell Mullowney.,, The news comes just as the Department of Fisheries and Oceans is set to meet with harvesters about snow crab in a series of meetings being held across the province between November 19 and 29. >click to read<19:44

Newfoundland and Labrador: Snow crab fishery changes tactics as stocks hit 25-year low

A study six years in the making shows some grim statistics for snow crab in Newfoundland and Labrador. The study was released at the same time the Department of Fisheries and Oceans announced the crab fishery was moving to a precautionary approach. That means if the crab numbers are low, the total allowable catch will be lowered, meaning less fishing for the province’s harvesters. >click to read<19:11

Cape Breton snow crab season short but lucrative

Glen Burns doesn’t bother kicking himself over it too much anymore. “I was never much of a gambler,” said Burns. “You won’t see me at the casino or down at the fire hall.” It was 2002, he had a one-year-old son and lobster gear he’d just taken over from his father. What the Margaree Harbour fisherman didn’t have was $120,000 to buy three crab traps worth of quota to add to the handful he’d taken over with his dad’s licence. And what neither he nor anyone else knew at the time was how valuable the crustacean would become to Cape Breton’s west coast. >click to read<

NewBrunswick: Some go home with more money in their pockets, some less, as fishing season ends

Lobster and crab fishermen in northern New Brunswick are removing their gear from the water Friday, as the season draws to a close. Saturday marks the official end to what fishermen described as a roller-coaster season in the Acadian Peninsula. All areas close to fishing on June 30, except for Neguac and Burnt Church, where the lobster season was extended until July 2. There were outcries and protests from the fishing community throughout the season, over new measures imposed by the federal government to protect endangered north Atlantic right whales, after a historically deadly summer. At the end of this eventful season, the feelings are mixed. >click to read<12:39

Disappearance of Daley Bros. another harbinger of bigger crisis facing N.L. fishery

April 20 was a difficult Friday for dozens of people working with Daley Brothers Ltd. in New Harbour. Their hopes of returning to work at the two seafood processing plants in the Trinity Bay community were abruptly dashed, after word spread that the company would not be reopening.,, Owner Terry Daley has refused interview requests, and has even rebuffed questions from Fisheries Minister Gerry Byrne, who’s trying to figure out if the closure is permanent, so he can activate government assistance for the displaced workers.,,, Another prominent company name in the industry is likely gone for good, much like P. Janes & Sons, Breakwater Seafoods and others. >click to read< 16:34

Making a killing – As whales die in frightening numbers, New Brunswick’s lucrative snow crab industry struggles under a global spotlight.

It all started when Charles Anastasia’s boat sank. This was in 1979, when 26-year-old Anastasia took to the ocean every morning to fill his nets with cod, back when that fish was still the beating heart of the Atlantic fishery. With his boat pinned 100 kilometres offshore during a “perfect storm,” a floating telephone pole skewered the hull like a marshmallow on a stick. The eight-man crew barely got a mayday out and survival suits on before the vessel sank beneath the 20-metre waves.,,, Soon after, the broad-shouldered, wide-cheeked man uprooted his life and moved to Alaska, buying and selling seafood for a living. It was here he encountered snow crab: a flat-bodied, 10-legged crustacean that transformed his life and would soon, on the other side of the continent, revolutionize an industry. >click to read<

‘Everybody’s losing’: Crab fishermen prepare for more closures this week

With nine more fishing areas to close this week as endangered whales arrive in the Gulf of St. Lawrence, New Brunswick snow crab fishermen are braced for a turbulent season. “We don’t know what’s going to happen today, tomorrow and for the coming days,” said Jean Lanteigne, general manager of the Regional Federation of Professional Fishermen, based in Shippagan. On Wednesday at 4 p.m., nine more “grids” or portions of grids will close to protect North Atlantic right whales from getting tangled up in fishing gear. That number is in addition to the six that closed last week. “It’s impossible to fish in there,” said Lanteigne. >click to read<18:01

Crab fishermen struggle as season begins under strict new regulations making some fishing grounds off limits

Snow crab fishing began last week in northern New Brunswick, the first season under strict new regulations by Ottawa to protect the endangered North Atlantic right whale. The most drastic of the new measures has been the closing of a zone off the province’s northeastern coast to fishing, a location where 90 per cent of the whales had migrated to last summer. That area is also an area rich in snow crab. As many boats came back from their first trip out to sea, some fishermen couldn’t help but feel anxious about what the season would bring. >click to read<16:11