Lobster season extended by 4 days in Gulf of St. Lawrence
Prices down 40% as COVID-19 hurt the spring lobster season
Lobster fishermen in the Gulf of St Lawrence will get a few more days on the water this summer to help redeem a blighted season.
On Wednesday, the Department of Fisheries and Oceans told harvesters their season closing date will be extended from June 30 to July 4.
The four-day extension affects fishermen in New Brunswick, P.E.I. and Nova Scotia, in lobster fishing areas 23, 24 and 26.
The department was responding to multiple requests from industry.
"For the most part, this is a positive development in a season that's been very challenging," said Ian MacPherson, the executive director of the P.E.I. Fishermen's Association.
He said some members will probably land their gear this weekend as previously planned.
The pandemic dampened the spring lobster season in Atlantic Canada.
The gulf opening was delayed by two weeks over safety concerns at plants and on boats, and depressed demand as restaurants, cruise ships and other food service customers shut down to slow the spread of COVID-19.
Industry officials told a parliamentary committee earlier this month that prices are down by 40 per cent this year.
Some plants had problems finding enough workers, which put limits on how much lobster they and wharf buyers would take each day.
With files from Angela Walker