Ross Butler, vice president of Cooke Aquaculture's operations in Newfoundland and Labrador, said the company has signed a one-year lease for the use of the Barry Group's Harbour Breton fish processing plant to process its salmon raised in Fortune Bay.
"We are very pleased to have been able to finalize this lease agreement with the Barry Group. Harbour Breton is well situated to service our farms in Fortune Bay and the Bay d'Espoir area. The agreement will continue to build on our company's investment in the province's coastal communities and give us internal control over our entire value chain."
Mr. Butler said Cooke Aquaculture hopes to be processing salmon at Harbour Breton by the end of November. He noted that the company has to complete three main objectives to get the plant in operation.
"I will be in Harbour Breton early in the last week of October to walk through the plant with our engineers. We have to determine what salmon processing equipment we will need in the facility as it does not have any salmon processing machinery right now.
"Secondly, we will have to install a temporary wastewater treatment system which is needed for processing raised salmon. As part of the lease agreement, the Barry Group will install a permanent wastewater treatment system for the plant operations and Cooke will assume the day-to-day operating costs of the facility."
The lease agreement is subject to the successful negotiation of a suitable contractual arrangement with the Fish, Food, and Allied Workers Union (FFAW) in Harbour Breton.