Exploring Down East in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia – Fishy Fishy
Updated: Sep 27, 2022
There’s a lot that’s fishy in the Maritimes.
Seafood resources are a key part of Nova Scotia’s economy. I visited two Yarmouth businesses that are essential links in that chain. Neither is set up for public tours, but here’s a brief backgrounder behind the scenes.
Phil LeBlanc, President of IMO Foods Ltd introduced some of the company’s products with the comment that “Kippers are one of those foods that people either love or hate.” So true. I hate kippers, but lots of people love ‘em. Bless their hearts.
The plant is kosher, non-GMO and gluten-free. IMO processes 10,000 pounds / 4,536 kilograms of naturally smoked fish 5 days a week. Quite impressive, even if I don’t like kippers. Taste testing for quality control would be my last job in the world, but this plus a state of the art sterilizing machine, ensures quality products that are shipped around the world.
On pretty Kelly’s Cove just outside town, Quality Seafood’s lobster pound is part of a larger enterprise that also has an international clientele. From a large indoor pool Paul Deveau (sporting a handlebar moustache) hauled out one of many laundry basket-size holding tanks that keep the Nephropidae (aka lobsters) happy in dark frigid 36°F / 2.2°C water. Paul's fallen in a few times — an occupational risk that comes with the job.
To preserve natural stocks, the legal requirement for lobster catches in Canada and the United States requires the thorax to measure no less than 3.25 in. / 8.2 cm. And that, in a lobster shell, is a glimpse behind the scenes and beneath your plate.
Photos and text © Gary Crallé 2022
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