ASP defends expulsion

Staff ~ The Telegram
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Executive director says Fogo Island Co-op violated ASP bylaws

The decision by the Association of Seafood Producers (ASP) to expel the Fogo Island Co-op from the group is easily understood and defensible, ASP executive director Derek Butler says.

"This is about our association having objectives, goals, working like any association.

"And either we all work towards those goals, and we strive to make this industry work better for everyone, or we don't," Butler said.

Derek Butler, executive director of the Association of Seafood Producers (ASP), made a statement to the media Tuesday about the ASP voting to expel the Fogo Island Co-op. - Telegram file photo

The decision by the Association of Seafood Producers (ASP) to expel the Fogo Island Co-op from the group is easily understood and defensible, ASP executive director Derek Butler says.

"This is about our association having objectives, goals, working like any association.

"And either we all work towards those goals, and we strive to make this industry work better for everyone, or we don't," Butler said.

"It's something every association faces."

Butler made the statement in a news release issued Tuesday aft-ernoon.

The ASP board of directors voted last month to expel the co-op because it broke ranks with the association during a price dispute with harvesters over crab.

The ASP, of which the co-op was a member, refused to buy crab at the set price of $1.35, saying it was too high.

But the co-op, which is owned by harvesters, broke ranks and opened its plant.

Butler said under ASP's bylaws, member-producers assign their bargaining rights to ASP when they join the association.

The co-op, on the other hand, decided to do its own thing with respect to collective bargaining, Butler said.

He said its actions "undermined" the goals of the ASP.

"If you join the choir, you sing from the same hymnal," Butler said.

"If someone wants to be a member of ASP, we are like any membership-driven organization - you are expected to pull on the same oar, in the same direction.

"And if a given producer decides they want to go their own way, they should have the self-respect to show themselves to the door, or be asked to leave."

Butler said officials with the co-op suggested they might leave the association in meetings earlier in the spring, and eventually the membership and board decided their leaving was for the best.

"It is my call as the head of the association, and our membership and our board, to evaluate whether at some point members are working in support of the association's goals and our attempts to affect public policy, collective bargaining and deal with some pretty serious issues, or against us.

"We have had members come and go in the past, and we will again, I am sure," Butler said.

telegram@thetelegram.com

Organizations: Association of Seafood Producers, Fogo Island Co-op

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Comments

Recent comments

  • Maurice E.
    July 02, 2010 - 13:34

    Shrimp prices are already up 25% in Mississippi. I guess the ASP will be quick to pass along any increases to fishers.

  • Brian
    July 02, 2010 - 13:34

    What a bunch, worse than government, tow tithe party line. Time for some of these groups to disappear. Let the fishery go to free market. Let the fisherman sell in and outside the province, wherever they can get the best price. Once this happens the producers in this province won't disappear, they will have to give fishermen a fair deal!!!!! As it works today just a bad as years ago with the fish merchant.

  • William
    July 02, 2010 - 13:34

    A few basic definitions:
    Association - An organized body of people who have an interest, activity, or purpose in common; a society
    Cooperative (Co-op) An association of persons united voluntarily to meet their common economic, social, and cultural needs
    Cartel - A combination of independent business organizations formed to regulate production, pricing, and marketing of goods by the members
    Sounds to me that the Co-op was doing what they were set up to do and the ASP is really a cartel disguised as an association.

  • Goulie
    July 02, 2010 - 13:32

    I guess once you fall outside of the dicatates of the Fish Mafia you get terminated. This fish mafia is being run by 3-4 large companies whose sole purpose is to put the smaller producers out of business so that the mafia can then have a stranglehold on both harvesters and plant workers. If this happens $1.35 will be a dream come true in the future.

  • Delton
    July 02, 2010 - 13:32

    Castles will crumble!
    The only reason Fogo had the option to break rank is because they process their own shrimp. Other processors that process crab are between a rock and a hard place since they rely on ASP to process certain species such as shrimp. This association have proven by expelling the Fogo Is Coop from its association that its primary function is that of a cartel. If Minister Jackman and the PC government ever had a serious thought of assisting the NL fishery, now is the time to change legislation and give free enterprise a chance. It would be no cost to gov't and a great boost to the NL economy if others were licensed to process seafood. In my opinion the Minister MUST act and allow competion in our very valuable renewable resourse.
    Crab in NB now is upward of $2.50/lb and only 1.35 here. Shrimp in Nova Scoia was $.73 last year while only about $.35 here. There is a HUGE difference!!!!!!
    With the crisis in the Gulf of Mexico($2.5 billion fishing industry shut down) and crab quota reductions in the Gulf (63% reduction) there is not a whimper of fish prices increasing!!!
    Minister Jackman once again I request you act on this unlawfull cartel and give the people of NL the treatment they deserve by allowing free enterprise.

  • robroy
    July 02, 2010 - 13:31

    So let me get this right? The co-op went ahead and bought the crab and lost money? If this is so maybe the board did the right thing in giving the boot. BUT if they bought the crab and took a loss based on the profits from before but still make a dollar i guess they upset the other producers of because their greed being shown tough call

  • Cluney
    July 02, 2010 - 13:29

    The ASP will pray for you on Sunday and prey on you on Monday.

    The ASP and Derek Butler are not singing from any hymnal, more like a urinal the way he p*sses on fisherman with his sanctimonious comments.

  • Nasty
    July 02, 2010 - 13:26

    This is about our association having objectives, goals, working like any association.

    Why yes it is. Create your monopoly and dictate your terms. If other fail to follow your orders they will be punished. Must be taking notes on the Williams business plan. I guess they fail to see that this is the wrong way to do things.

  • Frank
    July 02, 2010 - 13:23

    Time for fisher persons to form more Co-operatives and get rid of the fish merchants.

  • garge
    July 02, 2010 - 13:21

    dont hear bill barrys people complaining

  • Maurice E.
    July 01, 2010 - 20:24

    Shrimp prices are already up 25% in Mississippi. I guess the ASP will be quick to pass along any increases to fishers.

  • Brian
    July 01, 2010 - 20:24

    What a bunch, worse than government, tow tithe party line. Time for some of these groups to disappear. Let the fishery go to free market. Let the fisherman sell in and outside the province, wherever they can get the best price. Once this happens the producers in this province won't disappear, they will have to give fishermen a fair deal!!!!! As it works today just a bad as years ago with the fish merchant.

  • William
    July 01, 2010 - 20:23

    A few basic definitions:
    Association - An organized body of people who have an interest, activity, or purpose in common; a society
    Cooperative (Co-op) An association of persons united voluntarily to meet their common economic, social, and cultural needs
    Cartel - A combination of independent business organizations formed to regulate production, pricing, and marketing of goods by the members
    Sounds to me that the Co-op was doing what they were set up to do and the ASP is really a cartel disguised as an association.

  • Goulie
    July 01, 2010 - 20:21

    I guess once you fall outside of the dicatates of the Fish Mafia you get terminated. This fish mafia is being run by 3-4 large companies whose sole purpose is to put the smaller producers out of business so that the mafia can then have a stranglehold on both harvesters and plant workers. If this happens $1.35 will be a dream come true in the future.

  • Delton
    July 01, 2010 - 20:21

    Castles will crumble!
    The only reason Fogo had the option to break rank is because they process their own shrimp. Other processors that process crab are between a rock and a hard place since they rely on ASP to process certain species such as shrimp. This association have proven by expelling the Fogo Is Coop from its association that its primary function is that of a cartel. If Minister Jackman and the PC government ever had a serious thought of assisting the NL fishery, now is the time to change legislation and give free enterprise a chance. It would be no cost to gov't and a great boost to the NL economy if others were licensed to process seafood. In my opinion the Minister MUST act and allow competion in our very valuable renewable resourse.
    Crab in NB now is upward of $2.50/lb and only 1.35 here. Shrimp in Nova Scoia was $.73 last year while only about $.35 here. There is a HUGE difference!!!!!!
    With the crisis in the Gulf of Mexico($2.5 billion fishing industry shut down) and crab quota reductions in the Gulf (63% reduction) there is not a whimper of fish prices increasing!!!
    Minister Jackman once again I request you act on this unlawfull cartel and give the people of NL the treatment they deserve by allowing free enterprise.

  • robroy
    July 01, 2010 - 20:20

    So let me get this right? The co-op went ahead and bought the crab and lost money? If this is so maybe the board did the right thing in giving the boot. BUT if they bought the crab and took a loss based on the profits from before but still make a dollar i guess they upset the other producers of because their greed being shown tough call

  • Cluney
    July 01, 2010 - 20:17

    The ASP will pray for you on Sunday and prey on you on Monday.

    The ASP and Derek Butler are not singing from any hymnal, more like a urinal the way he p*sses on fisherman with his sanctimonious comments.

  • Nasty
    July 01, 2010 - 20:12

    This is about our association having objectives, goals, working like any association.

    Why yes it is. Create your monopoly and dictate your terms. If other fail to follow your orders they will be punished. Must be taking notes on the Williams business plan. I guess they fail to see that this is the wrong way to do things.

  • Frank
    July 01, 2010 - 20:08

    Time for fisher persons to form more Co-operatives and get rid of the fish merchants.

  • garge
    July 01, 2010 - 20:05

    dont hear bill barrys people complaining