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Supreme Court of Prince Edward Island
North Lake Seafoods is officially bankrupt after a P.E.I. Supreme Court judge’s ruling Thursday.
Justice Ben Taylor issued the order after an application from Ocean Pride Fisheries Ltd., which is one of the company’s creditors and leased its fish processing plant to North Lake Seafoods.
Taylor also appointed Grant Thornton as the trustee of North Lake Seafoods’ estate.
Ocean Pride claimed it hadn’t received any lease payments from North Lake Seafoods since a lease on its Elmira fish plant began in April and the company owed almost $490,000 to numerous creditors as part of its rental agreement.
Of that amount $445,611.40 was owed to Ocean Pride in outstanding rent.
The court records also claimed North Lake Seafoods owed the Canada Revenue Agency more than $127,000.
Newfoundland-based wholesaler Whitecap International Seafood has some of North Lake Seafoods’ unsold lobster, which documents filed in court said was worth an about $480,000.
Proceeds from the sale of that lobster would be used to pay some of the company’s debt.
Ian MacPherson, manager of the P.E.I. Fisherman’s Association, said the plant’s closure will lead to lost jobs and fewer players in the fishing industry.
“With the current surplus of lobster on the market, it will be difficult for someone to start up this spring and make money,” he said.
MacPherson said fewer plants open means reduced competition on the wharf for prices and fewer jobs.
“We need both sectors healthy.”