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McCurdy lipstick on fish price-setting pig

That's what the appointment today of Earle McCurdy, one-time head of the FFAW, to the province's fish price-setting panel amounts to. The panel system of fish pricing does not work for inshore harvesters in terms of landing them the best possible price for their catch, and McCurdy's appointment won't change that.

Earle McCurdy retired as President of the FFAW in 2014 (although he was rehired two days later), and went on to lead the provincial NDP (2015-2017).

The province's fish-price setting panel has always had three permanent members — one representing labour, another from industry, and a moderator. (There are also alternate members.)

McCurdy's appointment fits right in with that formula, but also undermines the biases, and magnifies the distrust between both sides in setting the price of fish.

The Association of Seafood Producers issued a statement to say "the FFAW has got one vote in their pocket on a three-person panel," only it's always been that way.


Chair: Wayne follett (one-time regional director DFO NL)

Regular Member: Earle McCurdy (FFAW)

Regular Member: William Carter (OCI, Cooke Aquaculture, FPI, etc.)

Alternate members:

Michael Dewling (CPA, 10 years with fish processing companies)

Brendan Condon (Former head of FFAW's certification board)

McCurdy's appointment won't take away from the weakness of the fish price-setting panel, which SEA-NL regularly highlights.

Besides McCurdy, provincial Fisheries Minister Derek Bragg recently appointed an advisory council whose members include Keith Sullivan, Tony Doyle, Loomis Way, and Alton Rumbolt — all FFAW to the core.

Reg Anstey, former secretary-treasurer of the FFAW, also heads the province''s fish processing licensing board.

Insanity has much in common with the NL fishery in terms of definition: doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.

Ryan Cleary,


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