Marine Research Centre to assist new lobster quality and innovation centre

Pictured is the Marine Research Centre at the Petit de Grat Campus of Université Sainte-Anne.

HALIFAX: The Marine Research Centre in Isle Madame will be part of a new lobster quality and innovation centre conducting cutting edge research.

On February 26, the province announced the new $2.5 million facility tasked with finding new ways to advance the quality and export value of lobster.

The province and Université Sainte-Anne are working together to develop the Lobster Quality Research and Innovation Centre based at Université Sainte-Anne in Church Point

With hopes of attracting a world-class research team, it will work closely with the university’s Marine Research Centre in Petit de Grat to support innovation in the lobster industry.

Areas of focus will include live lobster quality, handling and holding practices, storage and shipping and new technologies for grading. It will be guided by an advisory committee.

It is under construction and is expected to be ready for operation by summer.

“Be it for the betterment of our Acadian communities, the prosperity of rural Nova Scotia or the economic growth of our province as a whole, there is not a more logical area than lobster for Université Sainte-Anne to focus its energies as it grows its research enterprise,” Kenneth Deveau, vice president, Academic and Research, Université Sainte-Anne said. “We therefore could not be prouder than we are today as we announce the establishment of this Lobster Quality Research and Innovation Centre.”

The three-year budget of about $2.5 million will be used for personnel ($525,000 for a research lead and laboratory technicians), lab equipment ($1.6 million), and operating costs ($282,000). The funding comes from the province’s Building Tomorrow Fund which helps fisheries and agriculture companies working to create new products, access new markets and add value to existing products.

“The processors, buyers and sellers of lobster in Nova Scotia take quality very seriously and we welcome this initiative to bring a scientific look at ways to enhance lobster quality,” said Leo Muise, executive director of Nova Scotia Seafood Alliance. “We market our live and processed Nova Scotia lobster world-wide and always focus on providing the very best.”

Nova Scotia lobster is known around the world for its high quality. Nova Scotia exports $2.3 billion in seafood products to 80 countries, with lobster being the highest value export.

“We want Nova Scotia to provide the world with the highest quality lobsters available, so we are proud to fund this research centre to help work toward that goal for our growing seafood industry,” said Keith Colwell, Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture. “This centre will help strengthen the role of the province’s lobsters as a sustainable, renewable, natural resource in domestic and international markets.”

More information about the Lobster Quality Research and Innovation Centre can be found at:  https://www.usainteanne.ca/en/community-and-industry-liaison.