On Tuesday May 18, during debate on fisheries and wildlife in Manitoba, I had a chance to ask the MLA for Dauphin about the government's progress on eco-certification. There has, in the last two years in particular, been pressure from fishermen on Lake Winnipeg to move forward with eco-certification of the whitefish fishery so that they can get a better price for their fish. My question and the MLA for Dauphin's response is below:
Hon. Jon Gerrard (River Heights): Eco-certification is a really important marker of how well a fishery is sustainable. The government had committed to eco-certification, and so I ask the member why has the government not, in five years, eco‑certified the four biggest lake fisheries that we have had historically? That is Lake Winnipeg, Lake Manitoba, Lake Winnipegosis and Southern Indian Lake.
Mr. Michaleski: I thank the member for the question and for him raising an important issue that I don't have the answer for, but I do know eco-certification is something that is–something that's becoming more and more prevalent, especially when we're looking at food and food products. And people are wanting–and the market is changing towards eco-certification, and they're wanting to know how things are produced and where they're buying their products from.
So the–it is an important issue. I don't have the answer for it, but it is an emerging issue, that's for sure.