Fishermen from Petit Martinique are expected to receive the lion’s share of prizes in honour of Fisherman’s Birthday which is celebrated annually on June 29.
Chief Fisheries Officer Johnson St. Louis told THE NEW TODAY Newspaper that the local fishermen broke their own national record during the past year by landing 6.3 million pounds of fish.
He said exports also increased from $2M to $24M during the same period and this provided much-needed foreign exchange for the country.
According to St. Louis, there is still need for improvement with respect to the quality of fish that is landed.
Grenada exports the Yellow Fin Tuna to the United States and Canada.
Fishermen on the sister isles of Carriacou and Petit Martinique have reportedly done well in producing quality fish to sell in Martinique for the past 44 years without any detention or rejection by the health inspectorate in that French-speaking Caribbean territory.
During the period under review, the net fish catch increased from just under $6M in 1978 to $39M in 2014.
According to the Chief Fisheries Officer, the fishing industry now provides direct and indirect employment to five thousand people which
represent nine percent of the labour force.
St. Louis announced that a major prize-giving ceremony is planned for sometime during the coming month during which 66 fisherfolks will be awarded for their contribution to the industry.
He said $15,000 worth of prizes in trophies and gifts will be up for grabs during the prize-giving ceremony.
St. Louis described the fishing industry in Grenada at the moment as being very vibrant.
He spoke of the island benefitting through the use of modern technology with GPS (Global Positioning System) playing a great role in the fish catch.
There are currently close to two hundred long-liners including large and medium boats which are equipped with ice box to ice their fish catch in the ocean.