Meeting on fishery restructuring encouraging, say participants

Staff ~ The Telegram
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A much-anticipated meeting among key players in the province's fishing industry has wrapped up in St. John's, with all sides saying they were satisfied with the discussions.
The meeting was hosted by Fisheries Minister Clyde Jackman, and also included fish union boss Earle McCurdy and Derek Butler, who heads the seafood producers association.
It was the latest - and so far most tangible - step in an effort to restructure the troubled Newfoundland fishery.
McCurdy and Butler both made proposals that would dramatically change the way the fishery is prosecuted, and eventually, they hope, create an industry that is stable and viable. These proposals were not made public.
It's generally agreed by all sides that there is an overcapacity in the harvesting and processing sectors. The industry is also being battered by unstable currency exchanges and deteriorating markets.
Harvesters have repeatedly sounded the alarm in recent years about a steady drop in raw material prices, with some saying the harvest is no longer viable. Plant workers have also been hurt by unpredictable hours of employment.
Jackman said the proposals will be forwarded to a special steering committee established last year as part of a memorandum of understanding, and a final document will be compiled in the coming months.
Jackman said the province is willing to play a big part in the restructuring, but he also highlighted the need for an important role on the part of the federal government.
Among the ideas put forward include the re-establishment of a government-based lending agency, the creation of a comprehensive marketing strategy, the closure of fish plants and a streamlining of the harvesting sector.
Jackman said the ultimate goal is to create an industry where employees can make a decent living, without all the instability and uncertainty that currently plagues the fishery.
For more, see Saturday's edition of The Telegram

Organizations: The Telegram

Geographic location: St. John's, Newfoundland

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Recent comments

  • Manny
    July 02, 2010 - 13:31

    No federal representaive? See how much Ottawa cares about the people of NL. Sheesh!

  • Maurice E.
    July 02, 2010 - 13:21

    Big money, big debt --- and greed --- the driving force behind fisheries policy.

  • Dave
    July 02, 2010 - 13:13

    It sure seems that Earle McCurdy and Derek Butler must be on the same page about a lot lately , rather unusual , they shouldn't be getting along at all right now.
    Seems they have no problems holding their little secret proposals close to their chest , I guess because they have to.
    Why would someone who represents Harvesters and plant workers be in favor of eliminating them , you can't come up with anything more attractive than plant closure ???
    I guess the biggest baddest ones get to stay open right , time for you to go guys , anyone who supports this is an absolute failure to the jobs they hold and it's time you found something else to do .

    I wonder has Earle also made up his mind which of his members should be eliminated ,and I wonder how close his proposal is to Derek Butler's ??
    I bet they are a lot alike , and I do not think Earle is allowed to keep his secret . He should be made to show what his proposal says.

  • Manny
    July 01, 2010 - 20:19

    No federal representaive? See how much Ottawa cares about the people of NL. Sheesh!

  • Maurice E.
    July 01, 2010 - 20:05

    Big money, big debt --- and greed --- the driving force behind fisheries policy.

  • Dave
    July 01, 2010 - 19:51

    It sure seems that Earle McCurdy and Derek Butler must be on the same page about a lot lately , rather unusual , they shouldn't be getting along at all right now.
    Seems they have no problems holding their little secret proposals close to their chest , I guess because they have to.
    Why would someone who represents Harvesters and plant workers be in favor of eliminating them , you can't come up with anything more attractive than plant closure ???
    I guess the biggest baddest ones get to stay open right , time for you to go guys , anyone who supports this is an absolute failure to the jobs they hold and it's time you found something else to do .

    I wonder has Earle also made up his mind which of his members should be eliminated ,and I wonder how close his proposal is to Derek Butler's ??
    I bet they are a lot alike , and I do not think Earle is allowed to keep his secret . He should be made to show what his proposal says.