Mr. Speaker, it is setting day back home on the Northumberland Strait. After being delayed by weather throughout this week, the boats are finally going to hit the water to haul in our precious and world-class Nova Scotia lobster.
Last week, fishing boats along the beautiful eastern shore headed out to set their traps. Today, fishermen on the blue waters of the Northumberland Strait are doing the same.
The seafood caught off our shores gets exported to markets in Europe, Asia, the United States and beyond. Last year alone, Nova Scotia exports in the industry were valued at more than $2 billion dollars. Simply put, our seafood is the best in the world and people know about it.
To support the sector, we have made investments, like the $325 million dollar Atlantic fisheries fund. We have repaired or replaced nine local wharves. We are adding new cold storage facilities at the Halifax airport and Ballantyne's Cove. We are legislating protection of the owner-operator model for the inshore fishery. We are ensuring the sector has the tools and support it needs to succeed for generations and to help keep rural communities alive.
For everybody back home who are setting traps today or hauling in a catch, I wish them a safe and bountiful season. I encourage all my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to come visit me at home and enjoy a taste of world-famous Nova Scotia lobster.