The Canadian Government is to invest more than C$164,000 to the Pacific Sea Cucumber Harvesters Association and the Pacific Urchin Harvesters Association to support their international marketing efforts.
Exports of Pacific sea cucumber were valued at C$12 million and C$9.8 million in 2012 and 2013, respectively.
Exports of Pacific sea urchins were valued at more than C$13 million in 2012, with approximately 75 per cent of the harvest exported to Japan.
The investments are being made through Growing Forward 2's AgriMarketing Programme (Market Development stream), which aims to build and promote Canada's ability to expand markets at home and abroad.
"Our Government is proud to support these two British Columbia seafood organizations in their efforts to increase their global market share by promoting their products' high quality, safety, nutritional value and sustainability. These industries are generating much needed economic activity in rural and coastal areas,” Kerry-Lynne D. Findlay MP for Delta—Richmond East and Minister of National Revenue.
"The funding provided by AAFC has been, and remains, essential to our efforts to find and obtain the best markets and prices we can for our sea cucumber products. This project has allowed us to grow so we, as Canadian fishermen, processors and exporters, along with many Canadian trade representatives, are working more closely together to deliver better products and services to some of the world's fastest growing seafood markets, namely Hong Kong, the Chinese Mainland, Taiwan, as well as other parts of Asia,” said Ken Ridgway, President of the PSCHA.
"Canada's dive fisheries are among the most sustainable fisheries in the world and provide a range of high quality products enjoyed by consumers around the world,” said Mike Featherstone, President of the PUHA.
“Production from the BC Red Sea Urchin fishery is exported to many markets and, while Japan remains our largest single export destination, sales to Hong Kong, Taiwan and the Chinese Mainland are on the rise in large part because of our international marketing efforts.
“Our marketing program is well received thanks to the support provided by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada through the AgriMarketing Program.
“We are proud to be part of theGrowing Forward 2 initiative in presenting the best of Canada to the world.”