Canada redfish (Unit 1 & 2) - trawl

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Fishery Improvement Projects provide an opportunity to improve and document information and management of fisheries not yet eligible to receive sustainability certifications.

The  Atlantic Groundfish Council (AGC) is an organization that represents the  >100’ groundfish license holders in Atlantic Canada. The membership of AGC holds almost 80% of the quotas for each of the two management units.  As the fishery recovers from historic lows, the importance of a sustainable economic development of this expanding resource has never been higher. This FIP is a forum to plan for any sustainability issues to be resolved prior to assessment against the performance indicators of the MSC assessment framework.  

FIP Description 

Fishery Improvement Projects provide an opportunity to improve and document information and management of fisheries not yet eligible to receive sustainability certifications.

FIP Objective(s) 

The overall objective for this FIP is successful MSC certification of the fishery - individual FIP objectives were identified in April 2018, some have been completed, with the remainder expected to be achieved by April 2023:

  • Confirm on-going changes to stock status.

  • Develop stock projection capability for both species in both units, confirm stock rebuilding timeframes.

  • Develop/ implement a formal harvest strategy for stocks and species.

  • Develop harvest control rules that are robust to main uncertainties.

  • Implement commercial sampling program to collect and identify species mix in catch (completed).

  • Update existing or select new assessment model which considers main uncertainties and is capable of evaluating harvest strategy and harvest control rule options (completed, will be revised in 2022/23).

  • Produce a fishery footprint relative to both sensitive and less sensitive benthic habitat. 

  • Develop an integrated fishery management plan (IFMP) for the Unit 1 and 2 redfish fisheries, addressing all elements for which PIs exist. 

  • Develop fishery-specific objectives and incorporate them into IFMP.

FIP Type 
FIP Stage 
Stage 4: Improvements in Fishing Practices or Fishery Management
Start and Projected End Dates
April 2018
December 2023
As a result of Covid-19 disruptions, the Redfish Advisory Committee (RAC) meeting originally scheduled for spring of 2020 was cancelled. To date, DFO have not announced when the RAC meeting will take place. That management process is a key part of the consultation for development and adoption of harvest strategy, harvest control rules and setting of fishery specific objectives. Given on-going challenges with Covid-19 and DFO workloads, the timeline for this FIP has now been extended to five years, to provide sufficient time to develop, implement necessary management measures for the fishery and open the commercial fishery in Unit 1.
Next Progress Report Due 
Wednesday, March 30, 2022
Common Name 
Acadian Redfish
Scientific Name
Sebastes fasciatus
Common Name 
Deepwater Redfish
Scientific Name
Sebastes mentella
Gear Type 
Bottom Trawl
Midwater Trawl
FAO Major Fishing Area
Area 21 (Atlantic, Northwest)
Exclusive Economic Zones
Geographic Scope 
3.6% Allocation in Unit 2
Estimated Total FIP Landings 
10,500 metric tons
Estimated Total Fishery Landings 
10,500 metric tons

FIP at a Glance

18% 82%
April 01, 2018
7% 29% 64%
Progress Rating

A - Advanced Progress
Reserved for comprehensive FIPs that have a Stage 4 or 5 result within the past 12 months.

B - Good Progress
A FIP that has achieved a Stage 4 or 5 in more than 12 months AND Stage 3 activity in the last year; OR a basic FIP that has achieved Stage 4 or 5 achievements within the past 12 months.

C - Some Recent Progress
A FIP that has achieved a Stage 4 or 5 result in more than 12 (but less than 24) months but has not generated a Stage 3 result within the past 12 months OR a FIP younger than a year that has never achieved a Stage 4 or 5 result but has completed a Stage 3 activity.

D - Some Past Progress
A FIP for which the most recent publicly reported Stage 4 or 5 result is more than 24 (but less than 30) months.

E - Negligible Progress
A FIP older than a year that has not reported a Stage 4 or 5 result in more than 30 month (but less than 36) months; OR a FIP younger than 1 year that has not reported a Stage 3 activity.

The ratings are currently derived by SFP from publicly available data on FIP websites, including, and are determined using the following methodology: View PDF
C Some Recent Progress
Actions Complete

This pie chart represents completed environmental actions. Non-completed environmental actions may contain completed sub-tasks that are not illustrated here. For more information on environmental action progress visit the Actions Progress tab.

  • Complete
  • Incomplete
Next Update Due FisheryProgress requires a FIP to provide update reports every six months, and two missed reports will render the FIP inactive. If a report is overdue, this date will appear red.
Mar 2022
Target End Date
Dec 2023

FIP Leads

Organization Name 
Atlantic Groundfish Council
Organization Type 
Primary Contact 
Kris Vascotto
(902) 526-4582
FIP Identification Number The FIP Identification Number is automatically generated by FisheryProgress when a FIP profile is created. While the number itself is not meaningful, they are used by NGOs, academia, and industry to refer to FIPs in a consistent way.