Squid negotiations in 2022 were anything but good faith negotiations. On Monday both parties met with the provincial mediator to discuss an ASP proposal to postpone squid negotiations until late August. ASP’s proposed postponement centred around two issues: cold storage space and processors wanting to limit the occurrence of under 150g squid in the catch. ASP has admitted that there is no certainty that cold storage issues will be any different in August and minimum prices for squid will not change cold storage capacity. FFAW took this request and presented it to the squid negotiation committee where they unanimously rejected another attempt by ASP at delaying a fishery. FFAW fought keep the current squid negotiation schedule unchanged, so the fishery opens on time.
First offers were presented as per the original schedule at 10am Wednesday morning, July 13th. FFAW’s first offer was $0.80/lb and ASP’s first offer was $0.25/lb. FFAW requested to meet with ASP multiple times on Wednesday and Thursday to discuss offers and better understand the market considerations to justify ASP’s offer. Those requests were denied and ignored. FFAW repeatedly requested that both parties meet to discuss further and were only met with empty responses that ASP members were meeting to discuss. As of 4pm Thursday, submission time for panel offers, ASP never reengaged FFAW and harvesters to talk through squid in 2022.
FFAW submitted a price offer of $0.70/lb with all other conditions from 2021 still intact. ASP offered the following tiered price.
What is most disturbing about the ASP offer is that no part of their offer was discussed or proposed to harvesters. This is a blatant attempt to strip harvesters of a fair price. ASP knows that a bulk majority of the squid fleet won’t be able to land at a processing plant. ASP’s offer is just another dirty attempt by processors to increase their profits and deny harvesters a successful fishery. Processors made record profits this year off squid by buying at $0.66/lb and reselling that same squid for $1.75/lb.
ASP have been critical of arbitration process with the panel all year but refused to engage in a meaningful negotiation this week. ASP has refused to meet at any tables this year and have outright refused to reengage in squid negotiations after their delay was rejected. As we have seen on other species this year, processors continue to do everything in their power to make this year difficult for producers. FFAW won’t stand for these repeated stall tactics and will fight every illegal action through the grievance process. Thank you to the negotiating committee for your hard work and insights leading up to and during negotiations.