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August 30, 2013
For immediate release

Calgary seafood promotion creates new demand

Fisheries, Aquaculture and Rural Development

Increased sales of Prince Edward Island seafood products resulted from a recent promotional campaign in Calgary, says Fisheries, Aquaculture and Rural Development Minister Ron MacKinley.

“We met with seafood buyers, restaurant owners, and chefs to promote our high quality seafood products,” said Minister MacKinley. “This is an excellent opportunity to connect with seafood buyers and chefs to show them the high value of our top quality seafood and discuss potential opportunities.”

Minister MacKinley and the department worked with three Prince Edward Island suppliers (Royal Star Foods, Atlantic Aqua Farms Partnership and Five Star Shellfish), the Prince Edward Island Culinary Alliance and Sysco Food Services Calgary to increase awareness and demand for Prince Edward Island lobsters, mussels, oysters and clams to chefs, restaurant owners and seafood buyers. The eight-week campaign was carried out between early June and the end of July. More than one million people live in Calgary.

During the campaign, incentives were provided for increased sales by Sysco representatives and the 65 participating restaurants. These included three trips to Prince Edward Island during the International Shellfish Festival for Sysco sales representatives, two for participating restaurants and two for consumers who purchased seafood products.

“The relationship with Prince Edward Island has been very beneficial to Sysco and our Southern Alberta customers,” said Dave Desormeaux, President of Sysco Calgary. “Sysco prides itself in working with local suppliers and premium quality Canadian seafood products which differentiates our customers and adds value. This summer was very challenging for many of our customers, and the Prince Edward Island shellfish promotion helped them succeed with their business.”

Based on the success of the promotion in Calgary, Sysco is looking at expanding the promotion to other western cities.

Minister MacKinley is also promoting Prince Edward Island oysters at the Rocky Mountain Oyster Festival, where the winner of the oyster shucking contest will compete at Prince Edward Island’s International Shellfish Festival.

“Expanding markets for our seafood products will help broaden our market base and provide higher returns to both the harvesting and processing sectors in Prince Edward Island,” he said.

Media Contact: Kim Devine
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