Littoral Chair research project

Sustenance from the St. Lawrence

Manger notre Saint-Laurent


Several edible species throughout the St. Lawrence system (SLS) are little-known or disliked, notably grey seal, seaweed and redfish. Although fishing is an important economic activity in Eastern Quebec, coastal populations and other Quebecers do not have access to the resources of the SSL, which are mostly exported to international markets. This project aims to promote the edible food resources (animals and plants) of the whole SLS, including the river, estuary and gulf, as well as the pleasure of eating these local foods and food sovereignty. It aims at making science and the culinary arts available to communities by using interdisciplinary and intersectoral approaches.


Phase I (2018-2020)

  1. Document priority issues to better develop the food resources of the St. Lawrence with partners and key stakeholders in four communities in the Bas-Saint-Laurent, Gaspésie and Magdalen Islands regions
  2. Co-produce two knowledge mobilization tools to : (i) facilitate safe access to resources (shipping and ice conditions) and (ii) promote informed and sustainable food choices

Phase II (2020-2022)

  1. Document attitudes towards three edible ressources of the SLS (grey seal, seaweed, redfish) to identify obstacles preventing Eastern populations in Quebec, including poorer households, from consuming them
  2. Conduct a concerted analysis of new policies regarding the access, processing and distribution of resources from the SLS to promote food sovereignty and food security
  3. Pursue the development of tools for ice conditions and marine safety as well as for promoting the healthful, safe and sustainable consumption of resources from the SLS

Team members involved

Funded by
Principal investigators (Phase II)
  • Mélanie Lemire
  • Steve Plante (UQAR)
  • Marie Marquis (Université de Montréal)
  • Dany Dumont (UQAR)
  • Holly Witteman
  • Esteban Figueroa
  • François L’Italien
  • Yv Bonnier-Viger
  • Émilie Morin
  • Isabelle Cummings
  • Mayka Thibodeau
  • Jasmine Solomon
Cooks, visual artists, and journalists involved in the collective
  • Municipalités of Cap-Chat, Sainte-Thérèse-de-Gaspé and Magdalen Islands
  • First Nation of Wolastoqiyik Wahsipekuk (Maliseets of Viger)
  • Public Health Departments of the Gaspésie and Magdalen Islands and Bas-St-Laurent
  • Centre d’initiation à la recherche et d’aide au développement durable (CIRADD)
  • Centre de recherche sur les milieux insulaires et maritimes (CERMIM),
  • Exploramer
  • St. Lawrence Global Observatory



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