N.B. and P.E.I. governments invest to increase exports of frozen lobster products to China

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Seven companies and fishermen's associations from the lobster industries in New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island recently returned from a two-week trade mission that is part of an 18-month market development strategy to promote frozen lobster products to China.

Industry and government representatives took part in meetings with key Chinese seafood buyers, and participated in the China Fisheries and Seafood Expo, the largest seafood show in Asia.

Fisheries Minister Rick Doucet, Keith Ashfield, minister of state for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA), and P.E.I. Minister of Fisheries, Aquaculture and Rural Development Neil LeClair announced an investment of more than $700,000 toward the strategy. "The 18-month market development plan being launched in partnership with ACOA and P.E.I. is innovative, and targets long-term solutions to the challenges being faced, in particular by our lobster industry,” said Doucet. “China is the world's largest consumer of fish and seafood. It is a market that represents opportunities for our seafood processors and great potential for exports from our province." "China represents major opportunities for the Atlantic Canadian lobster industry, and I am pleased that government and industry are working together in this way to pursue those opportunities," said LeClair. "Expanding markets for lobster products is key to the strength and stability of the industry."

The investment will support the development and implementation of an 18-month comprehensive marketing strategy for the New Brunswick and P.E.I lobster industries, targeting both seafood buyers and consumers in the Chinese market. To accomplish this goal, participating Maritime seafood companies are working with market development specialists in government, and private consulting firms that specialize in the Chinese market.

Industry partners participating in the first of two missions include Pêcheries GEM Ltd., LA Trading Inc., Maritime Fishermen's Union, Moncton Fish Market, Connor Brothers Ltd., Ocean Pride Fisheries Ltd., and Mariner Seafood Inc.

The Government of Canada, through ACOA, is contributing $439,520 toward the project through the Community Adjustment Fund (CAF). The provinces of New Brunswick and P.E.I. are investing through their departments of fisheries, with an investment from the private sector.

Organizations: Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency, Rural Development Neil LeClair, Pêcheries GEM LA Trading Connor Brothers Ocean Pride Fisheries Mariner Seafood Community Adjustment Fund

Geographic location: Prince Edward Island, China, New Brunswick Asia Maritime Fishermen Canada

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