Province Supports home-grown seafood processor in Digby County

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A seafood processor for southwestern Nova Scotia and a strong contributor to the economy of Brier Island and Digby County, will continue to be a major participant in the 2009 lobster season with support from the government of Nova Scotia.

D.B. Kenney Fisheries Limited, part of a group of 14 companies, is receiving a loan guarantee of $2.5 million through the Industrial Expansion Fund to sustain its operations and jobs. This family-run business employs 70 people, has annual sales of about $15 million and processes and transports local seafood to domestic and international markets. It also generates business for many local fishermen and their crews. "This is an investment in sustaining jobs and growing the economy and seafood sector in southwest Nova Scotia," said Economic and Rural Development Minister Percy Paris. "It will also help sustain a competitive market for harvesters of lobster, scallop and fresh groundfish in the province. "The company has a strong management team with a wealth of experience and expertise to move it forward."

Seafood is Nova Scotia's second largest exported product – more than 80 per cent of its production is exported on an annual basis. Over the past several years, the industry has experienced a significant number of challenges including competition and fluctuations in market prices for products.

Expanding global competition is driving processors to focus on the fresh fish market as it provides better margins and lower operating costs than frozen fish market. "We are pleased to receive government support for this important sector and company," said owner and operator of D.B. Kenney, Daniel Kenney Junior. "Our shareholders have invested in a vital restructuring process focusing on profitable business lines and we are prepared to move this business into the future."

Tools like the Industrial Expansion Fund are helping businesses grow, thrive and maintain and/or create the jobs this economy needs. The fund is providing financial support in the form of loans and guarantees when many traditional sources are reluctant to do so at this time.

Organizations: Industrial Expansion Fund, D.B. Kenney Fisheries

Geographic location: Digby County, Nova Scotia, Brier Island

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