Canadian aquaculture, seafood exports see an uptick
Canadian exports grew once again in 2015, with total sales reaching CAD 6 billion (USD 4.5 billion; EUR 4.09 billion), Canada’s Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard Hunter Tootoo recalled at the 2016 Seafood Expo North America event on 7 March.
Those trade figures represent a 21 percent increase over the year prior, a record-high growth rate. The United States continues to be Canada’s largest export market, claiming 65 percent of fish and seafood exports at a total value of CAD 3.8 billion (USD 2.8 billion; EUR 2.5 billion). Canada plans to work with the United States to further allegiances moving forward, in areas of trade as well as with respect to obstacles effecting said trade, including illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing, said Tootoo.
“The United States has traditionally been and remains an important market for Canadian fish and seafood and Seafood Expo North American continues to represent a world class stage for our Canadian fish and seafood,” said Michelle Boudreau, President of the Fisheries Council of Canada, at SENA. “Minister Tootoo’s participation has a significant impact for our industry, demonstrating that we are working together to provide well managed, sustainable fisheries and premium quality fish and seafood products. We are pleased with the Government of Canada’s strong leadership and collaboration when it comes to preserving and promoting Canada’s world class fish and seafood.”
Canada’s aquaculture sector has also seen a jump, with demand from the United States and Asia on the rise. The aquaculture industry now contributes more than CAD 2 billion (USD 1.5 billion; EUR 1.3 billion) to the country’s economy.
“As global seafood demand is expected to continue to dramatically increase, we believe Canada’s aquaculture industry will have a vital role in feeding the world. Working cooperatively as seafood farmers, together with our government leaders, federally and provincially, we know we can meet that new demand responsibly with global best practices and continued sustainability,” said Ruth Salmon, Executive Director for the Canadian Aquaculture Industry Alliance, during a press conference at SENA16.