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In the news

The Government of Canada, provinces and territorial partners invest $8.5 million in Canada’s fish and seafood sector

20 July 2021
Seal harvest

July 16, 2021

Dartmouth, NS – Canada’s high quality, sustainable fish and seafood products are known worldwide. Canada, the provinces and territories are expanding markets, building on our country’s strong international brand and growing trade opportunities.

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Today, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans, and the Canadian Coast Guard, the Honourable Bernadette Jordan, together with participating provinces and territories, announced a total investment of $8.5 million for eight not-for-profit fish and seafood industry associations. The non-repayable CFSOF contributions will fund essential market research, consumer research and domestic and international marketing strategies.

Examples of funded projects:

The Atlantic Groundfish Council has received $4,185,000 in CFOSF funding for market research to develop and implement a market diversification strategy in China, Europe and the United States for redfish. The Atlantic Groundfish Council represents year-round groundfish harvesters in Atlantic Canada, and is committed to a balanced, sustainable groundfish industry that puts the responsible management of the resource first and foremost.

The Lobster Council of Canada has received $662,400 in CFSOF funding for activities to support the implementation of a generic marketing and promotional strategy for Canadian lobster in domestic and export markets, as well as, support industry capacity development in relation to market research and intelligence to manage ongoing and emerging market access issues. The Lobster Council of Canada unites contributors and partners in promoting and advocating for the Canadian lobster industry—one of the world’s most respected, prolific, and proudest fisheries.

The Canadian Fish and Seafood Opportunities Fund is a national federal, provincial and territorial program involving participating provinces and territories. Project investments focus on advancing a national approach to key cross-cutting market access issues and branding opportunities in order to maximize the value of our fish and seafood sector.

person holding gray and white fish


“Canada is known for its world-class fish and seafood, and we want to make sure that sector can continue to grow. When the pandemic hit, we re-launched The Canadian Fish and Seafood Opportunities Fund to help our partners in the industry to access new markets at home and around the world. The projects we’re investing in today will help create more opportunity and greater stability for the hard-working women and men of Canada’s seafood sector.”

The Honourable Bernadette Jordan, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard

“The Province of Nova Scotia is proud to invest in many of the opportunities that the Canadian Fish and Seafood Opportunities Fund has supported. These projects will help to inform consumers about the high-quality seafood products that are available from our waters, and showcase these products in global markets. The marketing project led by the Atlantic Groundfish Council will be an important piece when introducing Canadian redfish to consumers in China, Europe, the United States and many other countries.”

The Honourable Keith Colwell, Nova Scotia Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture

“We are pleased to support the important work of the Atlantic Groundfish Council and The Lobster Council of Canada through the Canadian Fish and Seafood Opportunities Fund. The fish and seafood sectors are essential economic drivers for New Brunswick’s’ Indigenous, rural and coastal communities and now more than ever we need to support and promote the high-quality fish and seafood products we harvest and produce. The work being undertaken through this funding will help support the sustainability and growth of this sector for future generations.”

The Honourable Margaret Johnson, New Brunswick Minister of Agriculture, Aquaculture and Fisheries

“Fish and Seafood are important traditions on PEI as well as vital contributors to the Island economy. We are pleased to help support this industry explore new markets, promote sustainability, develop innovative products and prepare the fishery for continued prosperity in the years ahead.”

The Honourable Jamie Fox, Prince Edward Island Minister of Fisheries

“Newfoundland and Labrador is pleased to be a partner in the Canadian Fish and Seafood Opportunities Fund, and to have contributed funding to seven pan-Canadian marketing initiatives for the benefit of the seafood industry in our province and throughout the country. This program allows the fish and seafood sector to work collaboratively on marketing Canadian fish and seafood products at home and abroad. We look forward to continued partnerships with industry, the federal government and other provinces and territories, on cross cutting market development and access projects. We are particularly interested in working with our partners in continuing to identify and access lucrative markets for seal products to support our seal fishery.”

The Honourable Derrick Bragg, Newfoundland and Labrador Minister of Fisheries, Forestry and Agriculture

“Funding support provided through the Canadian Fish and Seafood Opportunities Fund has allowed the Northwest Territories to promote seal as a food source and seal pelts as a distinctive resource for artists; and to establish a unique Seal Certification Program that allows ringed seal pelts harvested in the NWT to be exempted from the EU seal ban.”

The Honourable Caroline Wawzonek, Northwest Territories Minister of Industry, Tourism and Investment

“The seafood sector provides jobs for thousands of British Columbians and this funding will help promote our safe, reliable and top-quality seafood products. I want to congratulate the BC Crab Fishermen’s Association on receiving funding as they build a domestic marketing strategy for B.C. Dungeness crab with the goal of seeing more of these delectable crustaceans on B.C. plates in the future.”

The Honourable Lana Popham, British Columbia Minister of Agriculture, Food and Fisheries

person holding black fish during daytime

Quick facts

  • Together with provincial and territorial partners, the Government of Canada is supporting the fish and seafood sector with over $42 million in non-repayable support through the Canadian Fish and Seafood Opportunities Fund (CFSOF).
  • The CFSOF is a cost-shared program (70% federal and 30% provincial) and will fund eligible activities supported by participating provinces and territories (BC, SK, NT, YK, ON, NB, PE, NS, and NL).
  • Since 2018, 8 projects, with total assistance of almost $8.6 million, have been awarded under the CFSOF. The fish and seafood sector is integral to the economic and social fabric of hundreds of coastal and Indigenous communities in Canada, and generates approximately $3.1 billion (Gross Domestic Product) for the Canadian economy.
  • Eligible applicants under the CFSOF are not-for-profit industry organizations (e.g. associations and Indigenous groups) operating on a national, regional or sector-wide basis in the fish and seafood sector who are active in or supporting marketing related activities. Applicants operating on a regional basis must demonstrate that they represent significant production within their sector and have the ability to deliver a project from a national perspective.
  • The CFSOF is one pillar of the Atlantic Fisheries Fund (AFF). The other pillars of the AFF focus on advancing a more sustainable and prosperous fish and seafood sector in Atlantic Canada.