ST. JOHN'S, N.L. -- A pricing agreement has been reached between crab fishers and seafood processors that will allow for Newfoundland and Labrador's annual crab fishery to get started.

The provincial government says Premier Andrew Furey helped Sunday to negotiate the deal between the Fish, Food and Allied Workers Union, which represents inshore fishermen, and the Association of Seafood Producers.

The minimum price for the 2024 crab fishery has been set at $3.00 per pound.

Prices paid to fishermen for their catch are decided each year by a government-appointed panel, which set the opening price last year at $2.20 a pound, prompting crab harvesters to leave their boats tied up for six weeks.

Tempers have flared because crab fishers were earning more than $7 per pound during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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The pricing deal was reached after fishers said they planned to stage a protest today outside the provincial legislature, where the same group last month was involved in rowdy confrontations that forced the temporary closure of the Confederation Building for safety reasons.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 15, 2024.