2020-01-15

Ocean economy blueprint, boat-to-plate tracker among local MP’s ministerial to-do list

by Keith Corcoran

  • <p>FILE PHOTO</p><p>South Shore-St. Margaret&#8217;s MP Bernadette Jordan, pictured at an event in Wileville in September 2019.</p>

Canada's newly-installed Fisheries and Oceans Minister, Bernadette Jordan, is encouraged by policy objectives set out in the mandate letter issued by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, noting aspects highlighting the so-called blue economy and developing a boat-to-plate traceability program.

The recently re-elected Jordan will work with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency and Health Canada in establishing the traceability aspect, designed to help fishers better market products.

"We're known for high-quality seafood, and making sure we can prove that we have that high-quality seafood I think that is something that is extremely exciting," the South Shore-St. Margaret's MP told LighthouseNOW. "Making sure that people know where their food comes from is extremely important."

Guiding principles in the mandate letter also indicate Jordan's portfolio will take the lead in establishing a "blue economy strategy to help guide future government actions and investments that enable Canada to grow its oceans economy to create good middle class jobs and opportunity for coastal communities while advancing our conservation objectives."

Jordan, also the minister in charge of the Canadian Coast Guard, is also pleased with inclusion of bolstered spending in small craft harbours and forthcoming work to introduce Canada's first-ever Aquaculture Act.

There are many objectives listed in the mandate letter, which can be viewed online, and Jordan said she'll do the best she can within the timeframe the Trudeau Liberal minority government is given. All cabinet mandate letters can be viewed at: https://pm.gc.ca/en/mandate-letters on the internet.

"This is how we're going to sustain our coastal communities; this is how we're going to make sure that we not only look after our oceans but that we can drive our economy from it," Jordan added.

And the warming waters associated with the climate crisis is among the challenges facing the blue economy, she indicated.

"I think it's really important to us as coastal people to recognize that this letter [contains] how were going to address issues as they come at us."

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