Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Kim Sigurdson It's time for government fish monger to cut bait

  • Print

The Freshwater Fish Marketing Corp. is making promotional videos of its operation even as it sinks into debt at a time when fish prices have skyrocketed.

Making movies instead of profits makes no sense; nor does a finding that it has not addressed conflict of interest issues.

But that's the state of affairs, all evidence that the fish corporation and its board of directors should be sent packing.

The FFMC is losing money at an unprecedented rate. It recently posted its third-quarter results showing losses of $718,000. To illustrate how bad that is, the difference from the third quarter this year and third quarter last year is almost $3 million. And the fourth quarter, always its worst, is yet to come.

Meanwhile, a Jan. 13 report by the Office of the Auditor General noted that "potential conflicts of interest on the part of board members are not well managed." Further, it found that the board has taken "no action" to correct this problem.

In one instance the AG found a conflict of interest when the board paid its former president and CEO'S thousands of dollars over and above his already gold plated retirement package.

With the FFMC sinking in sea of red ink and with its moral compass swinging, someone at the corporation decided that the proper response would be to make a movie to burnish a tarnished image. The president and CEO stars in one video. It is impossible to say whether it is vanity or if he seriously believes the video could help improve FFMC's image. On the other hand it's easy to see the board should focus on marketing fish and not making videos. (Video can be seen at www.youtube.com/watch?vrdjbg-HksUM.)

It is hard to comprehend how FFMC could be losing so much money when market conditions couldn't be better. It certainly isn't due to selling fish to our largest market, the United States. Pickerel currently is selling in Minneapolis for $22.99 a pound. The fish board pays fishermen about $2 a pound. With those margins, you might think the FFMC would be making money, not losing it. Meanwhile, whitefish has been selling at record high prices and other species are in great demand.

One reason for high demand for Manitoba fish is the contamination of pickerel and northern pike stocks in the Northwestern Ontario fishery. Commercial fishermen there are forbidden to sell their large pickerel and northern pike due to elevated mercury levels. Yikes, I swim in that water.

After 40 years, it is time to return all aspects of this industry back to the fishermen that rely upon it to make a living. It is time for the government to get out of the fish business.

Kim Sigurdson is CEO of

Aboriginal Cogeneration Corp.

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition May 3, 2013 A15

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Red River ice jam breaks up

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • A Great Horned Owl that was caught up in some soccer nets in Shamrock Park in Southdale on November 16th was rehabilitated and returned to the the city park behind Shamrock School and released this afternoon. Sequence of the release. December 4, 2012  BORIS MINKEVICH / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS
  • Two Canada geese fly Wednesday afternoon at Oak Hammock Marsh- Front bird is banded for identification- Goose Challenge Day 3- - Apr 30, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

Do you agree with the suspensions levied against three bantam hockey players for abusing game officials?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google