Gert House is “thrilled to death” a salmon hatchery is coming to Stephenville. The former resident was on hand at Stephenville town hall Friday for the announcement that Northern Harvest Sea Farms Ltd. is carrying out a $23.5-million expansion of its operations in this province. Its new hatchery will be located in Stephenville.
Larry Ingalls, owner of Northern Harvest Sea Farms Ltd. in New Brunswick, talks about the salmon smolt hatchery coming to Stephenville. — Photo by Frank Gale/The Western Star
Gert and her husband Jerome House live in Fredericton, N.B., not far from a number of aquaculture-related operations in the St. Andrews By the Sea area, and they have a lot of family and friends who work in the industry.
“They all do well and the area is very prosperous because of it. Many of those companies have representation here today and I’m sure there will be more to come,” Gert said.
The Houses are currently spending time in the area at their summer home in Port au Port West. They believe this new industry will improve the local economy.
Fisheries and Aquaculture Minister Clyde Jackman announced Friday the provincial government is supporting Northern Harvest Sea Farms Ltd. with a commitment of $8 million.
He said in addition to expanding its marine cage farming operations in the Coast of Bays region, this expansion would include the construction of a salmon smolt hatchery in Stephenville.
“This project will enable the province’s aquaculture industry to achieve the critical mass necessary to attract further private sector investment in the province,” Jackman said. “The new hatchery, in particular, is an important component of growing the province’s aquaculture industry to the next level.”
“They all do well and the area is very prosperous because of it. Many of those companies have representation here today and I’m sure there will be more to come." Gert House
He said completion of the hatchery will ensure security of smolt supply for the provincial industry, provide for greater biosecurity in the transport of smolt and provide the opportunity for the industry to take advantage of the full growing season, as well as reduce overall costs for smolt, provide greater flexibility in stocking fish and increase the competitiveness of the industry.
To assist the company with setting up operations in the province, the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador is providing 50 per cent of the cost of setting up the hatchery and 25 per cent of the cost of expanding the marine farming sites. The financing will be based on a matching investment from the company. In return, the provincial government will have an equity position in the expanded company until the development is completed and the provincial investment is repaid in seven years.
The Western Star