Higher Snow Crab Quota in Newfoundland and Labrador in 2022

News release

March 31, 2022

St. John’s, NL - Snow crab is the backbone of the fishery in Newfoundland and Labrador. Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s management practices in recent years, supported by evidence-based science advice, favourable ocean conditions, and the stewardship of local harvesters, have rejuvenated the snow crab stock in most areas throughout the Province. Improvements in the stock are likely to continue in the short-term and point to continued growth and a sustainable fishery into the future.

For these reasons, the Honourable Joyce Murray, the Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, is pleased to announce that the 2022 total allowable catch (TAC) for the Snow crab fishery in Newfoundland and Labrador will be 50,470 tonnes. This represents a 32 per cent increase from 2021.

The 2022 management approach strikes an important balance. It supports economically prosperous coastal communities and continued growth and sustainability in the fishery while taking a cautious approach to help regenerate snow crab. The anticipated opening of the 2022 Snow crab fishery is in early April.


“The fish and seafood sector is incredibly important to Newfoundland and Labrador, and all of Atlantic Canada. I am committed to helping it grow for future generations. Responsible management between harvesters, Indigenous fishers and other partners has helped this valuable Snow crab fishery grow. I wish harvesters a safe, prosperous season as we continue to support the growth of this stock for years to come.”

The Honourable Joyce Murray, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard

Quick facts

  • The approximate 2022 TAC distribution in each of the Newfoundland and Labrador areas is as follows:

    • Area 3Ps – 54 per cent increase to 7,768t;
    • Area 4R3Pn – 49 per cent increase to 522t;
    • Area 3LNO – 23 per cent increase to 30,940t;
    • Area 3K – 32 per cent increase to 9,840t;
    • Area 2J – 28 per cent decrease to 851t; and
    • Area 2H – no change to the 100t exploratory quota
  • The recent snow crab stock assessment found that there were increases in exploitable biomass index in all snow crab Assessment Divisions except 2HJ.

  • A total of nine snow crab advisory meetings were held virtually across NL from March 3-17, 2022 where Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) heard the views of harvesters, representatives of the Fish Food and Allied Workers (FFAW) union,  Indigenous partners, and other stakeholders.

  • The Total Allowable Catch in 2021 was 38,186 tonnes, an increase of 29 per cent from 2020. Overall, 100 per cent of the quota was landed during the 2021 season.

  • Icebreaking arrangements are being made to assist crab fishers with harbour breakouts as requested and when safe to do so.

Associated links


Claire Teichman
Press Secretary 
Office of the Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard

Media Relations
Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Stay Connected

Page details

Date modified: