Snow Crab Fishing is Designated Unsustainable in Canada

The Marina Administration Council, an international organization that sets the standards for sustainable fishing, has suspended the sustainability certificate for the snow crab fishery in the Gulf of San Lorenzo.

This measure is due to the fact that the practices of this industry have caused the death of several right whales, a species of North Atlantic cetacean that is at risk of extinction.

The Board of Directors Marina made its decision on Tuesday after an audit carried out on this lucrative fishing activity in the southern Gulf of San Lorenzo.

The London-based organization said it determined that this fishing activity no longer meets the board’s standards for endangered, threatened and protected species.

This decision means that maritime areas of several crabs fisheries in the Gulf can no longer be sold as certified by the Marine Stewardship Council or bear the seal of this entity, a seal that informs consumers that a species was captured in a sustainable manner.

In 2017 there were at least 17 confirmed deaths of right whales in Canada and the United States. Several of those big cetaceans died entangled in the fishing gear of the snow crab.

Corpse of a whale that died entangled in the fishing gear of the snow crab

In response, the Federal Minister of Fisheries, Dominic LeBlanc, presented a series of new rules for the fishing of snow crab in the southern Gulf of San Lorenzo. Its purpose is to reduce the amount of rope that is left floating on the surface when the traps to catch these crabs are placed on the bottom of the sea.


Source: Radio Canada International