According to a Recent Survey, The Majority of Fishers Agree
Between May 24 and June 7, 2013 active commercial fishers in Manitoba were randomly selected to take part in a phone survey.
Over the past two years or so there have been many claims that the majority of commercial fishers were unhappy with Freshwater Fish as the only purchaser of their catch. Our communications company set out to test the accuracy of this claim.
An independent, third-party research company (Prairie Research Associates) was hired to make the phone calls and ask a few short questions of active Manitoba commercial fishers.
We asked five questions and the results are as follows:
We asked whether fishers believe commercial fishing has a positive economic impact in Manitoba. Nearly nine in 10 fishers believe commercial fishing does have a positive impact (64% very positive and 23% somewhat positive) on the Manitoba economy.
Fishers were then asked how important it is that Freshwater is the organization responsible for ensuring the quality and food safety of fish products exported from Manitoba. Once again, nearly 90% of fishers felt it was important (72% very important and 16% somewhat important) for Freshwater to be responsible for the food safety of fish products being exported.
They were also asked if they were aware of the Export Dealer’s Licence option available through Freshwater – 63% said they had heard of this opportunity.
Fishers who indicated they were opposed to Freshwater as the only purchaser of commercial fish gave these top three reasons:
- They don’t like the pricing system
- They prefer a dual market
- They do not like Freshwater employees
The top three reasons why fishers indicated they were in support of Freshwater are:
- It is a good system that already works
- They had poor experiences previously with other dealers
- Stable prices and guaranteed payments
The survey indicates the majority of fishers support Freshwater as the only purchaser of commercially-caught fish. Whether in favour of or opposed to Freshwater, many fishers worry what will happen in the event that Freshwater is no longer an option.
Going forward, we plan to repeat this survey at regular intervals to better understand the thoughts of commercial fishers. It is important all fishers are heard.