The Newfoundland Federation of Hunters and Anglers is calling on the federal fisheries department to change the rules for the recreational fishery.
The fishery opens Saturday and will run until Aug. 11. The three-week span is shorter than in the other Atlantic provinces.
Barry Fordham, a board member of the Federation of Hunters and Anglers, said the shorter season in Newfoundland and Labrador means that people often feel pressured to fish for cod, even when the weather is bad.
"If the season was expanded a little longer, then we could have a much longer time to be able to go at it," Fordham told CBC News.
"As it is now, people sometimes end up taking chances, and unfortunately sometimes some of those chances can turn into tragedy."
The recreational fishery will resume for nine days in the fall.
Fordham said he hopes that everyone takes advantage of the opportunity, although he said safety should be paramount.
"I've seen people go out in boats that normally would be considered pond boats, and you kind of like have to shake your head," he said.
"I remember one year [when] I towed in three people."
In a statement to CBC News, the Department of Fisheries and Oceans defended its rules for the recreational fishery, including a shorter window in Newfoundland and Labrador.
"The cod stocks in Newfoundland and Labrador are separate stocks from those in the rest of Atlantic Canada and have to be managed separately," wrote communications officer Sam Whiffen.
"In Newfoundland and Labrador cod is the primary target during the recreational groundfish fishery, [but] this is not the case in other provinces. Generally there is a higher participation rate in the recreational fishery and there is a higher level of fishing for cod Newfoundland and Labrador than in other provinces."