Guy Dean’s long career of more than 30 years in the seafood industry will add a new position as of next Monday, May 29, 2023. The former President and General Manager of Organic Ocean will become Vice President of Partnerships and Acquisitions at Coastal Nations Fisheries (CNF). Both companies are based in British Columbia, Canada. WeAreAquaculture spoke with him to learn more about the motivations for this change.
Creating large-scale change in the sector
“I’ve spent a great percentage of my life focused on promoting our industry and seafood in general. Seafood is the healthiest protein on the planet and has the ability to solve health challenges such as diabetes, heart disease, and obesity. However, in order for us to enjoy this resource, we need to harvest it responsibly and provide food security and access to all those who need it”, Guy Dean tells WeAreAquaculture when asked why this change, especially as he will remain attached to his former company as a shareholder.
“Organic Ocean is a great company and shares a similar passion and ethos as myself regarding being a sustainability minded company, however, this CNF opportunity has the ability to create large scale change within the industry and that was what appealed to me when I was first presented with the job description”, he continues.
Sustaining coastal communities into the future
Coastal Nations Fisheries is a fishing company collaboratively owned by eight First Nations – Gitga’at, Gitxaala, Haida, Heiltsuk, Kitasoo Xai’xais, Metlakatla, Nuxalk, and Wuikinuxv. The goal of this transformative company is to revitalize and reactivate community fishing fleets on the North Pacific coast as a critical step in ensuring that marine resources sustain coastal communities into the future.
This ability to transform not only the industry but also the coastal communities is what made Guy Dean take the step towards this new professional challenge. “The ability to be part of a transformative enterprise that has a strong socially oriented backbone especially while the company is still in its infancy was something I wanted to be part of”, he says.
Advocating for people, planet, and profits
CNF’s new Vice President of Partnerships and Procurement is an advocate of the “triple impact” approach for companies in the seafood sector. Dean believes that, in addition to profit, the focus should be equally on people and the environment. “This new position has a focus on profit and our impact on the environment while also reviving indigenous fishing livelihoods and creating stronger communities so it aligns with my approach”.
For Guy Dean, these three areas are intertwined dimensions that require an equal balance between the three Ps: People, Planet, and Profit. “Some describe profit as a dirty word, but the reality is that if the company is not profitable, we would not be able to financially support the changes required on the water and in the communities we live and work in”, he concludes.
About Coastal Nations Fisheries
Coastal Nations Fisheries (CNF) is a transformative 100% Indigenous-owned commercial fishing enterprise working to revitalize community fishing fleets and the livelihoods they provide for families. By reinvesting profits from commercial fishing and providing ongoing financial support to shareholder Nations and their fishermen, CNF helps maintain healthy and thriving economies for all of them.
Gitga’at, Gitxaala, Haida, Heiltsuk, Kitasoo Xai’xais, Metlakatla, Nuxalk, and Wuikinuxv are the eight First Nations that own the business. Each member of these nations’ communities is both a shareholder and participant in this pioneering project that aspires to become one of the largest fishing companies in British Columbia, Canada.