New Blog from Interim President, Stan Lazar ~ Manitoba's Withdrawal from FFMA

The Province of Manitoba announced its withdrawal from the Freshwater Fish Marketing Act (FFMA) and we understand this will be effective in the fall of 2017.  The withdrawal creates an open market environment that Freshwater wants to participate in and we’re restructuring how we do business to be here for fishers.

One of the big changes for fishers and Freshwater is that we will no longer be obligated to purchase all fishers’ catch if there is no market demand.  We have created a new business plan to match the open market of purchasing fish in Manitoba, with both the sustainability of the industry and livelihood of fishers in mind. 

Freshwater is offering voluntary, multi-year contracts with fishers who want to sell all their fish to us. Our intent is that if we purchase all your fish, the new contracts provide assurance to fishers that all fish under contract will be purchased, processed and sold. 

One question we are being asked is why Freshwater is offering multi-year contracts. There are several reasons, including Freshwater’s ability to manage and market supply and demand. Additionally, fishers who agree to these contracts will receive:

  •  committed seasonal pricing 
  •  continued commitment to purchase and pay for all fish on a weekly basis 
  •  stabilized delivery points and access to Freshwater resources where applicable– totes, tubs, ice 
  •  profit-sharing 
  •  improved operational planning and expenditures

In compliance with pending provincial legislation, Freshwater will apply for a “Fish Dealers License” to have the corporation here for fishers.  We are currently hosting community discussions over the next several weeks, to review and provide understanding of the "Fisher Purchase Contracts".