Minister promotes seal products to Chinese market

HALIFAX — Canada’s fisheries minister courted Chinese officials Tuesday in a bid to secure new markets for the country’s beleaguered seal industry as other nations shut their doors on the maligned products.

HALIFAX — Canada’s fisheries minister courted Chinese officials Tuesday in a bid to secure new markets for the country’s beleaguered seal industry as other nations shut their doors on the maligned products.

Gail Shea and several Canadian sealing companies paraded a collection of sealskin fashions, seal oils and medical uses for seal organs at the International Leather and Fur Show in Beijing.

Shea said she’s trying to develop markets for new seal products, like meat, organs and oils, as the European Union moves ahead with its ban on the import of Canadian seal products.

“The EU was a small market for Canada. Of course, we’re disappointed in their actions,” Shea told reporters by phone from China.

“There are many other markets out there. That’s what we’re doing in China — we’re trying to expand on the market that’s here.”