Language selection


Thirtieth meeting of the Seafood Value Chain Roundtable: Record of decision

June 19 to 20, 2018 – Ottawa, Ontario

Key decision points

  • The Maximizing Value Working Group will review information gathered at the facilitated session on how to maximize value in Canada’s fish and seafood sector, and present a proposed plan on how to proceed at the next SVCRT meeting.
  • Industry members supported the Agri-Food Economic Strategy Table’s draft recommendations and look forward to seeing actions taken to implement them.
  • Members will discuss next steps in addressing requirements to certify on-board labour standards.
  • The development of an aquaculture act will be discussed at the July 17, 2018 meeting of the Canadian Council of Fisheries and Aquaculture Ministers.

See Annex A for a list of action items and Annex B for a list of participants.

Opening remarks

  • Carey Bonnell provided a recap of the April 27, 2018 All Chairs meeting, highlighting the discussion on Value Chain Roundtable (VCRT) input to the Agri-Food Economic Strategy Table and noting the high degree of commonality on key priorities (that is, labour, regulations, market access and innovation) across the VCRTs.
  • A delegation of VCRT industry co-chairs made a similar presentation on key priorities at the May 24, 2018 meeting of the Federal-Provincial-Territorial (FPT) Deputy Ministers of Agriculture, which was very well received.

Maximizing value and achieving growth

  • A facilitated discussion was held to advance the work of the SVCRT to maximize the value of Canada’s fisheries and aquaculture resources.
  • A scene-setting presentation considered a supply chain versus value chain approach. In a value chain approach, different links in the chain communicate and collaborate in strategic partnerships, which improves overall competitiveness and increases value for all participants.
  • A review of issues and impediments to maximizing value was followed by an identification of desired outcomes and proposed actions for the seafood industry by 2023 under six themes:
    • sustainability
    • harvest (raw material quality and full utilization of catch)
    • highest value of harvested products (making the best use of the catch)
    • highest value markets
    • maximum prices
    • better coordination of efforts throughout the value chain.
  • Industry response to the session was very positive.
  • The Maximizing Value Working Group (MVWG) will review the information from the session and develop a proposed plan, in consultation with industry stakeholders, to be presented at the next SVCRT meeting for approval.
  • The MVWG welcomes new members. It is not a requirement to be a member of the SVCRT in order to participate in a working group.

Agri-Food Economic Strategy Table

  • An overview was provided of the 17 draft recommendations from the Agri-Food Economic Strategy Table (EST), which have been compiled under five themes: infrastructure, labour and skills, market diversification, innovation, and regulations.
  • Roundtable members found the recommendations generally in line with input the SVCRT had provided to the EST in April. Additional points were made around the need for infrastructure to include wharves and increased cold storage at ports, the need for greater investor certainty, and a desire to follow through on the recommendations.
  • The EST will validate the recommendations with industry over the summer and will submit final recommendations to Minister Bains in September.
  • The SVCRT’s industry members will provide comments on the proposed recommendations to EST chair Murad Al-Katib and relevant ministers by the fall.

The Canadian aquaculture industry

  • The Canadian Aquaculture Industry Alliance (CAIA) presented on the socio-economic benefits, opportunities and challenges facing the Canadian aquaculture industry. Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) presented on potential changes to aquaculture management beyond 2020.
  • CAIA reported that with the right regulatory framework, the industry could double in size in the next 10 years. DFO noted that FPT Ministers will discuss the development of an aquaculture act at the July 17, 2018 meeting of the Canadian Council of Fisheries and Aquaculture Ministers.

Safe Food for Canadians Regulations

  • The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) discussed the Safe Food for Canadians Regulations (SFCR), which will come into force on January 15, 2019. Industry congratulated CFIA on successfully launching the regulations.
  • CFIA indicated that some items have already been identified for improvement and it would be reasonable to expect a SFCR II within five years.

Ambassador of the European Union to Canada

  • The European Union (EU) Ambassador to Canada spoke on the opportunities for Canada under the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement, highlighting there were opportunities in all 28 countries.
  • He also underscored the importance of the EU-Canada Oceans Partnership Agreement and the Oceans Supercluster to address issues impacting the ocean, and future bilateral cooperation areas with Canada.

Blockchain technology

  • A presentation on the use of Blockchain technology in the fishing industry was provided. Digitizing the tracking of data along the value chain is expected to reduce human error and provide a level of protection against falsified information.

Certifying on-board labour standards

  • An update on labour assurance standards for seafood was provided.
  • The On-Board Labour Standards Task Group will hold a call to discuss next steps in addressing requirements to certify on-board labour standards, including possible use by the EU of the International Labour Organization’s Work in Fishing Convention Number 188 (ILO 188) as a market entry requirement.
  • The federal government departments/agencies responsible for on-board labour standards may be invited to speak at the next SVCRT meeting.

Updates from Fisheries and Oceans Canada

  • Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) provided an update on Canada’s participation in the process to develop an international treaty on biodiversity beyond national jurisdiction at the United Nations.
  • DFO reported on the successful outcome of the recent G7 ministerial meeting, as well as next steps regarding follow up work to the meeting.
  • The upcoming meeting of the United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organization’s Committee on Fisheries was discussed, including key topics of interest for roundtable members.
  • A status update and outline of next steps was provided on the US Marine Mammal Protection Act.
  • DFO provided an overview of recent fisheries closures as well as other fisheries management measures being implemented to protect North Atlantic Right Whales.


  • The next SVCRT meeting will be held in Ottawa in approximately six months. Roundtable members are invited to submit suggestions for potential agenda items to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) for consideration by the co-chairs.

Annex A: Action Items

Meeting / Item # Action Items Lead Timeline
30-1 Update the SVCRT on Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) progress to create a blue growth forum, and to have involvement from the Canadian fish and seafood industry. [Carried over from June 2017 action items.] Industry co-chair TBD
30-2 DFO will share an updated inventory of all Federal-Provincial-Territorial funding programs open to the Canadian fish and seafood sector, when it is available. [Carried over from January 2018 action items.] DFO TBD
30-3 The Tools Development Working Group (TDWG) will:
  • collect (or commission if necessary) research related to the public perception of fish and seafood in Canada, to be used by both the TDWG and the Public Trust Steering Committee;
  • develop a strategy for a phased approach for a Canadian seafood awareness campaign for the domestic market, including identifying funding opportunities;
  • leverage the work of the Public Trust Steering Committee to benefit the development of a campaign to raise domestic awareness of Canadian fish and seafood.

[Carried over from January 2018 action items.]

TDWG chair November 2018
30-4 SVCRT industry members will write a letter to the Canadian Council of Fisheries and Aquaculture Ministers (CCFAM) to discuss future opportunities, changes needed in the sector, available funding, and highlighting policies that are holding back much needed investments. The letter will focus on issues of common interest across the sector. [Carried over from January 2018 action items.] Industry co-chair July 2018
30-5 AAFC will provide a link to the information captured at the June 20, 2018 facilitated session on maximizing value. SVCRT members will be encouraged to share the link with stakeholders as appropriate, to allow for broader input to the process. The link will be open for up to two weeks. AAFC; all June-July 2018
30-6 The Maximizing Value Working Group (MVWG) will review the information gathered during the facilitated session at the June 2018 SVCRT meeting, identify priorities, and develop a proposed plan and next steps for SVCRT approval. MVWG chair November 2018
30-7 The Strategic Working Group (SWG) will consider the recommendations from the Agri-Food Economic Strategy Table and provide comments to EST chair Murad Al-Katib and relevant federal ministers. SWG chair August 2018
30-8 The On-Board Labour Standards (OBLS) Task Group will hold a call to discuss next steps in addressing requirements to certify on-board labour standards, including possible use by the EU of ILO 188 as a market entry requirement. OBLS chair September 2018
30-9 Possible agenda items for the next SVCRT meeting:
  • Ocean Supercluster update
  • Western Economic Diversification Canada to present on programs that could support the Canadian fish and seafood sector
  • Linda Cornish from Seafood Nutrition Partnership
  • Federal government departments/agencies responsible for on-board labour standards
  • Marine protected areas
AAFC and DFO November 2018

Annex B: Participants


  • Carey Bonnell, Head, Marine Institute School of Fisheries, Memorial University
  • Nadia Bouffard, Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO)

Industry members

  • Jonathan Mitchell for Adam Ross, High Liner Foods (by phone)
  • Alexandra Leclerc, Metro Inc.
  • Andrew Lively, Cooke Aquaculture
  • Annie Chiasson, Maritime Fishermen’s Union (by phone)
  • Bob Verge, Canadian Centre for Fisheries Innovation
  • Brian Burke, Nunavut Fisheries Association & Qikiqtaaluk Corporation
  • Catherine Boyd, Clearwater Seafoods
  • Chris Curran, Ocean Choice International
  • Chris Sporer, Seafood Producers Association of BC
  • Claude O’Hara, Glooscap Ventures
  • David Boyes, Arbegar Fishing Co. Ltd.
  • David Lomas, Connors Bros Clover Leaf Seafoods
  • Eddie Campbell, Freshwater Fish Marketing Corporation
  • Geoff Irvine, Lobster Council of Canada
  • Heather Mulock, Coldwater Lobster Association
  • Ian MacPherson, PEI Fishermen’s Association Ltd.
  • Jean Lanteigne, Canadian Council of Professional Fish Harvesters
  • Jerry Amirault, Lobster Processors Association of NB and NS
  • John Nishidate, Grand Hale Marine Products Co. Ltd.
  • Karl Sullivan, The Barry Group
  • Keith Sullivan, Fish, Food and Allied Workers
  • Kerry Cunningham, Sea Star Seafoods Ltd.
  • Paul Lansbergen, Fisheries Council of Canada
  • Sarah Provencher, Quebec Fish Processors Association
  • Terry Ennis, Atlantic Aqua Farms (by phone)
  • Tim Kennedy, Canadian Aquaculture Industry Alliance

Youth participants

  • Ryan Ferguson, Connors Bros. Clover Leaf Seafoods

Provincial government members

  • Michel Bélanger (Quebec)
  • Kimberly Watson (New Brunswick)
  • Larry Neilson (British Columbia) (by phone)
  • Geordie MacLachlan (Nova Scotia) (by phone)
  • Sean Barry (Newfoundland and Labrador)

Federal government members

  • Mia Garland-Keeling, Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
  • Soraya Cheung, Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) (by phone)
  • Xavier Trégan / Bruno Tavares, Innovation, Science and Economic Development
  • Sylvie Millette LeDuc, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC)

Guests / speakers

  • Amber Lindstedt, DFO
  • Connor Robinson, DFO
  • Doug Blair, RIAS Inc.
  • Eric Enno Tamm, ThisFish
  • John Campbell, DFO
  • Lise Kay, DFO
  • Lyzette Lamondin, CFIA
  • Marc Valois, Intersol Group Ltd.
  • Martin Gooch, Value Chain Management International
  • Peteris Ustubs, EU Ambassador to Canada
  • Randy Jenkins, DFO

Industry observers

  • Derek Butler, Association of Seafood Producers
  • Bob Courage, BAADER Canada Ltd.

Federal government observers

  • Ben Gailor, Natural Resources Canada
  • Jean Lambert, AAFC (by phone)
  • Justin Turple, DFO
  • Olivia Merritt, DFO
  • Robert McDonald, DFO
  • Yuan-Kuen Wang, DFO
  • Roman Zakaluzny, AAFC (by phone)
  • Xuguang Huang, AAFC


  • Events Secretariat, AAFC
  • Grace Chung, DFO
  • Ingrid Schenk, DFO
  • Inge Vander Horst, AAFC
  • Ron Gerold, AAFC
  • Shannon Bennett, AAFC
  • Warren Gould, AAFC
Report a problem on this page
Please select all that apply:

Date modified: