Grieg Seafood’s Managing Director, Rocky Boschman (left) and Councillor Thomas Smith sign the net-cleaning contract between Grieg and the Tlowitsis Nation on May 14, 2021 in Campbell River. Grieg Seafood photo

Tlowitsis Nation signs net-cleaning contract with Grieg Seafood, servicing salmon farms in Clio Channel

The Tlowitsis Nation and Grieg Seafood BC have signed a contract that will see the Nation's business, Chief's Pride Aquaculture Corp., assume responsibility of all net-cleaning operations at Grieg's salmon farms in Clio Channel commencing June.

The Tlowitsis Nation and Grieg Seafood BC have signed a contract that will see the Nation’s business, Chief’s Pride Aquaculture Corp., assume responsibility of all net-cleaning operations at Grieg’s salmon farms in Clio Channel commencing June.

There are three Grieg farms in Tlowitsis territory. The contract includes a five-year lease of net-cleaning equipment, a skiff, and a crane barg, a Grieg press release says. As part of on-site operations, Chief’s Pride employees will join Grieg’s staff in an accommodation barge in Clio Channel, northwest of Campbell River, which will provide kitchen, laundry and fitness facilities during their shifts.

“The Tlowitsis are always looking for opportunities that will benefit the Nation monetarily and provide potential jobs for our members,” said Thomas Smith, Councillor for the Tlowitsis Nation.

“As much as there seems to be controversy about the business, we believe many First Nations should be looking at long-term relationships with salmon farming partners. There are only so many opportunities available, and most of the Nations have traditional territories adjacent to the inlet waters – it only makes sense. As a participant in the Canadian Aquaculture Industry Alliance’s Indigenous Partnership Network, it looks like more Nations will be looking at aquaculture in the future.”

“We are inviting Nations to become involved in our operations not only as benefit agreement partners, but also providing contract services via multi-year contracts. They have a business that they own 100 per cent, while they employ their members and work with us,” said O.D. Hansen, Grieg’s Director of Reconciliation and Indigenous Partnerships. “This is part of our relationship with a Nation, proposing opportunities for needed services at our fish farms within their traditional territories.”

The contract was signed by the Tlowitsis and Grieg Seafood on May 14 and will come into effect on June 28, 2021.

More information:

– The Tlowitsis are a British Columbia First Nation of about 430 registered citizens. Their traditional territories span the coastal area of Northern Vancouver Island, Johnstone Strait and adjacent mainland inlets.

– The Tlowitsis Nation is establishing a new village known as Nenagwas on 635 acres just a few minutes south of Campbell River. Nenagwas means “a place to come home to.”

– Grieg Seafood BC has 16 operational salmon farms on the east and west coasts of Vancouver Island and the Sunshine Coast and employs over 170 people.•Grieg’s Clio Channel farms are called Noo-la, Tsa-ya and Wa-kwa. The names are Kwak’wala for big brother, little sister, and ‘little brother.

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Campbell River Mirror