Restructuring Canada's Atlantic Lobster Industry

Traps

Traps

Fishing Boat

Fishing Boat

Lobster

Lobster

Lobster Traps with Floats

Lobster Traps with Floats

Atlantic lobster is Canada’s most lucrative fishery and provides a high-quality, healthy food that is exported around the world.

There are almost 10,000 licensed lobster enterprises, employing about 30,000 harvesters across Quebec and Atlantic Canada.

The global economic and financial crisis of 2007-2009 has negatively affected lobster harvesters. Harvesters who are highly dependent on lobster and who normally have relatively low overall harvest landed value have experienced a significant decrease in their landed values in 2009.

On June 10, 2009, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans Gail Shea announced that the Government had made a $65 million investment to help fishers in the Atlantic lobster industry adapt to the extraordinary market conditions created by the global recession.

Up to $50 million is being invested over five years in Atlantic Lobster Sustainability Measures to support those in the industry who develop and implement long-term sustainability plans. This includes a $15 million allocation specifically for those who work in low-income areas and have experienced significant losses due to chronically low lobster landings. The Atlantic Lobster Sustainability Measures program is scheduled to end on March 31, 2014.

Up to $15 million was also set aside in 2009 for the Short-Term Transitional Measures program to assist qualified low-income harvesters severely harmed by the collapse in market demand for their products due to the global recession. The Short-Term Transitional Measures program ended on March 31, 2010.

Profile of Canada’s lobster fisheries.