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Fisheries and Aquaculture
January 26, 2011

Shrimp Shell Processing Facility to be Established with Support
from Provincial Government

Eastern Star Group Canada Inc., a partnership between Canadian and Chinese entrepreneurs that is focused on commercial utilization of marine based materials, is establishing a shrimp shell processing facility in Twillingate with the assistance of $500,000 from the Provincial Government.

“This project is exciting for a number of reasons,” said the Honourable Derrick Dalley, Minister of Business. “The processing facility is being established in rural Newfoundland which will result in new employment and other spinoff benefits for the local economy. Also, this initiative is positive for the environment since the plant in Twillingate will no longer have to dispose of this waste material as it had in the past. Finally, the project sees the implementation of new technology that brings added value to the existing shrimp fishery.”

The facility will dry and compact shrimp waste to produce two products: dried shrimp shells for shipment to China, to be processed into contamination-free glucosamine (a non-vitamin, non-mineral dietary supplement), and a protein by-product to be targeted to the aquaculture industry as a component of feedstock. By processing the shrimp waste, Eastern Star will redirect refuse that would normally be dumped at sea or sent to the area landfill.

“Our government is pleased to support the full utilization of shellfish products,” said the Honourable Clyde Jackman, Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture. “Shrimp shells are a valuable product in and of themselves and we are pleased to support this value-added activity in the province’s fishing industry.”

An approximately 5,000 square foot processing facility is currently under construction in Twillingate that will operate for up to 10 months per year.

“Eastern Star Group is committed to developing its activities in the Twillingate area,” said Hettiger Chang, President and CEO of Eastern Star. “We have already identified several unique business opportunities in the Chinese market and we plan to further expand the operation in Twillingate over the next few years to encompass these opportunities. Hopefully this will lead to an even greater level of employment in the area.”

Under the Provincial Government’s Business Attraction Fund, a $500,000 loan is being provided for the initiative. This will result in the creation of 19 full time jobs during the periods when the facility is operational. The Business Attraction Fund provides customized financial assistance for start up or expansion activities by investors external to the province. Budget 2010: The Right Investments – for Our Children and Our Future allocated a total of $29 million under the fund this fiscal year.

“Our government is taking steps to create the right environment for business investment and expansion,” said Minister Dalley. “We will continue to support opportunities that diversify Newfoundland and Labrador’s rural economy by attracting new business and building innovative industries.”

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Media contacts:

Luke Joyce
Director of Communications
Department of Business
709-729-7628, 725-4165
Lori Lee Oates
Director of Communications
Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture
709-729-3733, 690-8403
Debbie Reynolds
Chief Financial Officer
Eastern Star Group

2011 01 26                                                        12:00 p.m.

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