Program helps new fishers prepare to join industry

The provincial government is renewing the Future Fisher Program to continue providing assistance and advice to new entrants to the Island lobster industry. 

The program offers mentoring and financial support for new entrants to the Island lobster fishery and helps them become knowledgeable on various aspects of the fishery to better position them for success.  

“Fishers make a tremendous contribution to the Prince Edward Island economy and to community life right across the province. Fishing is a demanding business and we want to work with new fishers to help them learn about the fishery, business principles and all the skills that can help them succeed.”

- Fisheries and Communities Minister Jamie Fox

The Island lobster fishery has approximately 1,225 licenses and employs around 5,000 people annually. In 2020, lobster was worth $330 million to the provincial economy.

“Our seafood products are world class and, as economies open up, we look forward to seeing demand return. What we want to do is encourage new entrants to the fishery and help them to succeed in this demanding but rewarding business,” said Minister Fox.

More than 240 new lobster captains have graduated from the three-year program since it started in 2009.

“We work closely with the fishing industry and with past program participants to make sure the program meets the needs of young people entering the lobster industry,” the minister said.

Bobby Jenkins, President of the PEI Fishermen’s Association, said Future Fisher helps new entrants learn important information about the rewarding, but challenging lobster fishery.

“The PEIFA has been very supportive of the Future Fisher Program. We see it as a means to have engaged and informed participants in the industry,” he said.

This training has been very well accepted in the industry as it gives new captains a solid grounding in lobster biology and handling, financial management, and marine skills to assist them to be successful in the fishery.

For more information on the Future Fisher Program and to apply, visit: Future Fisher Program.

Media contact:
Ron Ryder
Department of Fisheries and Communities

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