Since 1989 Great Northern Products Ltd. is honored to be the preferred marketing company for fishermen and packing houses out of Canada. Great Northern Products (GNP) began by working on behalf of several large producers in Quebec and Eastern Maritimes of Canada in the late 1980s. Back then, product was shipped to GNP on consignment and they sold it at the best price possible, in order to return the best price to the supplier. It succeeded tremendously and in just a few years, 95% of GNP’s inventories were on a consignment basis from Canada. In the 1990s GNP was approached by very well-known shrimp producers from Mexico. They had heard of GNP, our reputation and way of doing business, and we started shipping product on the same basis, on their behalf. GNP’s expansion continued year after year, when customers requested salmon, mussels, smelts, squid, and crab that needed to be sourced from other parts of the world such as South America and the Northwest Atlantic, namely Chile, Argentina and Peru and Iceland, Norway, and the Faroe Islands.
All of these countries are very similar to Canada and Mexico with regard to quality standards. Each country is highly regarded by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration authorities as serious countries who produce clean and honest finished products. Each of these countries are recognized by the federal government, since they all have state-of-the-art seafood processing facilities and conform to the HACCP plan put in place by the U.S. Government.
Great Northern Products has an international reputation for selling seafoods that are consistently high in quality due to standards set by the owners, the pride of the plants’ workers and fishermen in achieving these standards. Today, the leadership of the members from each original company, continues to strive for excellence, just as Great Northern Products does.
All of Great Northern Products raw materials derive from approximately 1800 independent fishermen, whose vessels range anywhere from 35 to 65 feet length overall (LOA). The smaller inshore vessels operate up to 50 miles from shore and the larger vessels operate in more remote locations. GNP also harvests with refrigerated sea water (RSW) vessels for snow crab operations.
Species Great Northern Products purchases include:
- Ground fish – Cod, Greenland Turbot, Flounder, White Halibut, Grenadier, Redfish, Catfish, Skate
- Shellfish – Snow Crab, Rock Crab, Atlantic Crab
- Pelagics – Capelin, Herring, Mackerel, Squid, Smelts
- A full list of species offered can be found here.
Handling practices on board all fishing vessels are aimed, first and foremost, at maintaining the quality of the raw material. All vessels delivering to GNP’s processing plants are well maintained and they adhere to high sanitation standards. Raw materials are size and quality graded when offloaded and held in insulated containers with slush or flake ice prior to processing. At dockside, quality inspections are done to ensure that the quality of the raw material is perfectly maintained. Quality assurance procedures meet and exceed the requirements of the government’s Quality Management Program. This overall effort provides the processing operation at various locations in Canada, South America and Scandinavia with the highest quality raw material.
All of Great Northern Products processing facilities, in every country of operation, are supervised under stringent quality guidelines and process all raw materials soon after they arrive. GNP’s plants strive to maintain the quality of the raw material from the time it leaves the water to the final product stage. To accomplish this, GNP relies on state-of-the-art plant facilities and production equipment, highly trained production personnel, including full-time quality management personnel, a strict quality management regime which pays close attention to customer demands for product quality, and a work ethic among our employees which is second to none in Canada’s fishing industry.
In addition, production management is aided by computerized weighing, grading, cutting, costing and inventory control systems. The end result is an efficient production environment, which allows Great Northern Products to consistently deliver high quality products at competitive prices.
Great Northern Products has always been a leader in species development and form of presentation development. GNP, through its director, Mr. George Nolan, was one of the only two companies who developed the Snow Crab Cluster in Eastern Canada.
GNP continues to develop markets for emerging species every day. The Paiche (Arapaima) fish from Brazil is a recent species GNP has started to import. This prehistoric fish lives in the Amazon River and is now farmed to be completely sustainable.
GNP prides itself on having personnel who are always monitoring new trends in the industry, emerging species, and locating the best seafood possible in order to ensure all around customer satisfaction. They also pay close attention to customer needs and packing of the products to precise market specifications to maintain the freshest, highest quality seafood possible. The sales and logistics team at Great Northern Products are committed to satisfying all your seafood needs around the corner or around the world.