By: Michael Ramsingh
Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency has announced $800,000 in funding to support research and development in the seafood sector in two rural Cape Breton communities.
Cape Breton-Canso MP Rodger Cuzner was in Isle Madame Tuesday to make the announcement.
After years of research, NovaCan Live Seafood has developed a technology capable of storing live snow crab for extended periods of time, allowing the company to export to new markets. The design represents new technology as there are no live snow crab storage operations in existence.
ACOA is supporting the expansion with a $500,000 loan under its business development program to assist with the construction of the storage system. Upon completion, the facility will be capable of holding up to 150,000 pounds of live snow crab.
Many companies that process daily catches struggle to stay competitive and face new challenges such as attracting and maintaining a qualified workforce.
With assistance from ACOA’s business development program, the Université Sainte-Anne marine research centre will establish a mobile seafood processing unit that will serve as both a resource for the fishing industry as well as a training facility to help address demographic, geographic, competitive, and resource challenges.
The project is intended to alleviate labour shortages in the fishing industry and create a seamless pathway between education and employment. The federal government is contributing a $300,000 grant to the pilot program.
“The federal investments announced today will work to support research and development initiatives to ensure our workers are ready and our products are of the highest quality as we export them to tables around the world,” Cuzner said in a news release.
“We are very proud of the industry leading innovative research and development projects conducted at our marine research centre located in Petit-de-Grat, and we are very grateful for the support we receive from all levels of government, which allows us to continue this important work,” Kenneth Deveau, vice-president academic and research with Université Saint-Anne, said in the release.
Nova Scotia is Canada’s largest exporter of fish and seafood, exporting approximately 125,157 tonnes of product each year.
Re-printed with permission of SeafoodNews.com