Aquaculture North America

Canada earmarks $62.5M for fish, seafood processors

April 27, 2020
By ANA staff

Canada’s fish and seafood industry is getting new funding in an effort to keep grocery shelves stocked amid the COVID-19 crisis.

The Canadian Seafood Stabilization Fund, which was announced by Prime Minister Justine Trudeau on a live broadcast on April 25, is aimed to provide fish and seafood processing plants access to short-term financing to pay for maintenance and inventory costs, and adapt operations to respond to changing requirements and new market demands.

“As we fight COVID-19, people who work in fish and seafood processing plants across the country are playing a crucial role when it comes to getting food to our tables. This fund will help ensure that they can safely continue to their important work,” said Trudeau during his Saturday broadcast.

“We’re giving more money to processors so they can purchase personal protective equipment for workers, adapt to health protocols and support other social distancing measures. For example, fish processing plants could buy new equipment, like freezers or storage space, so that their product – food for Canadians – can stay good while they respond to a changing market.”

The announcement of this new funding has drawn praise from the Fisheries Council of Canada (FCC) and the Canadian Aquaculture Industry Alliance (CAIA).

“Together, our industry continues to work to provide safe, healthy and sustainable farm-raised and wildsourced food products,” said Timothy Kennedy, President & CEO of CAIA, in a statement. “This support will help to ensure our industry remains operational to support Canadians at this critical time and as we begin to recover from this crisis.”

The Canadian Seafood Stabilization Fund will be delivered through the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency, Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions, and Western Economic Diversification Canada. Further details on how and when processors can apply for assistance are to be confirmed at a later date.

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