Minister, on April 3, you stated that basically it was going to be up to individual areas to determine if the fishermen wanted to delay their season openings or stay on the shore. While this commitment held true for harvesters in certain areas—maybe not in other areas where they were delayed—these decisions added to some uncertainty that was faced by the sectors and the Canadians they employ.
I heard from one harvester in Tignish, Prince Edward Island, who said, “Losing our first two weeks is a massive blow. This is the period where we catch our biggest landings.” Fisheries representatives also warned that the season delays could create a surge of the harvest, causing the additional challenges for harvesters and processors that we see today.
Why was the commitment that was made to fishermen, that they would determine if there would be delays in season openings, that they would kind of lead that, broken? It got moved away from them.