As in most other industries, much has happened in this field over the last hundred years:
lobster fishing is now strictly monitored to ensure the protection of this delicate seashell species and highly priced licenses must be purchased to participate in the catch. On average, the lobster fishing season lasts 4 to 6 months. Nova Scotia has a highly sustainable lobster population thanks to this well thought out and monitored system: the Atlantic coast is divided into 41 coastal sections and the on/off fishing seasons are rotated in these sections to guarantee lobster fishing all year round.
A much larger sector of Nova Scotia’s industry is lobster fishing. When European settlers first started establishing themselves in North America, the lobster stock was so large that with every storm, lobsters would be washed ashore for up to a half meter on the beaches. Back then lobster was a source of food for only the poorest segment of the population living along the coast. The actual lobster boom started in Maine, USA.
By the mid 18th century, the lobster trade was already in full bloom. In 1885, an amount of 130,000,000 pounds of lobster was caught and brought to market. During those days, lobster was not yet shipped alive; the lobster was boiled and mostly tinned. At the end of the 18th century, many consumers complained about lobster’s high price (it was 10 cents a pound at the time). Nowadays fisherman can obtain prices ranging from $5.50 to $6.50 CAN. Incidentally, today’s “Maine” lobster mostly comes from Canada.