Federal government providing funds to fish and seafood processors
April 27, 2020, Ottawa, Ont. – In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, Fisheries, Oceans and Canadian Coast Guard Minister Bernadette Jordan has announced $62.5 million of new assistance to the fish and seafood processing sector.
The new Canadian Seafood Stabilization Fund (CSSF) will help businesses:
- Access short-term financing to pay for maintenance and inventory costs;
- Add storage capacity for unsold product;
- Comply with new health and safety measures for workers;
- Support new manufacturing/automated technologies to improve productivity and quality of finished seafood products; and,
- Adapt products to respond to changing requirements and new market demands.
Government states that the investment will help ensure the resilience of the food system by allowing Canada’s fish and seafood processing sector to safely and efficiently process, store, package, and distribute healthy, high-quality products, sourced from fish harvesters and aquaculture operators, onto the plates of Canadians.
The funding will provide tangible assistance to help address the financial strain and instability that the fish and seafood processing sector is facing.
The CSSF will be delivered through the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency, Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions, and Western Economic Diversification Canada. Further details on how and when processors can apply for assistance will be confirmed at a later date.
“The women and men in our fish and seafood sector have been feeding this country for generations,” said Jordan. “Through the new Canadian Seafood Stabilization Fund, our government is investing directly into this sector, ensuring the industry has the support it needs to adapt to current realities brought on by COVID-19. Bolstering our processing sector is vital to supporting fish harvesters and feeding Canadians.”
Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages Mélanie Joly said government knows it is a difficult time for the fish and seafood processing sector and is working to ensure the support is implemented as quickly as possible.
“Through this new Fund, we are helping Canada’s fish and seafood sector remain strong and stable. We have your back to help you keep your employees and bounce back from this pandemic.”