The Manitoba government is investing $2.5 million to establish and implement programs that support the sustainability and certification of Manitoba’s fisheries in partnership with the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD), Natural Resources and Northern Development Minister Scott Fielding announced today.
The new Sustainable Fisheries and Certification Program will support commercial fisheries by funding activities including:
- enhancing the collection of fisheries data that is utilized to inform fisheries management decisions and support certification processes;
- improving the sustainability of fisheries such as licence and quota buy-back programs;
- progressing towards securing the certification of Manitoba’s commercial fisheries such as providing financial supports for certification processes; and
- promoting sustainable fisheries certification in Manitoba or market-certified fish from Manitoba.
“The Sustainable Fisheries and Certification Program aligns with our commitment to support the sustainable development of the world’s natural resources,” said Dimple Roy, director of water management, IISD.
This program, which builds on previous partnerships between the province and IISD, is expected to have a positive impact on local fisheries by improving the sustainability of fisheries, enhancing engagement with fishers and enhancing capacity building for fisheries to participate in certification processes, noted the minister.
“With sustainable fisheries certification quickly becoming a requirement to maintain access to markets around the world, the Freshwater Fish Marketing Corporation is very pleased with Manitoba’s commitment to support the sustainability and certification of commercial fisheries,” said Stan Lazar, president, Freshwater Fish Marketing Corporation.
This new program builds on previous investments made to support commercial fisheries in Manitoba including:
- the recertification of the Waterhen Lake fishery and providing funding to support a full certification assessment of the Cedar Lake fishery;
- a commitment of $600,000 in additional funding to enhance annual provincial fisheries field programs;
- a $175,000 grant to enhance collection of lake whitefish data on Lake Winnipeg; and
- the recent release of two fish stock assessment reports for Lake Winnipegosis and Lake Manitoba and the commitment to continue engagement to discuss the sustainability and future management of these important commercial fisheries.
Previously, Natural Resource and Northern Development has collaborated with IISD to support the sustainability and certification of Manitoban fisheries with initiatives such as quota and licence buy-back programs and activities that support Manitoba’s numerous Indigenous fisheries.