Kivalliq Arctic Foods puts Igloolik char on Nunavut store shelves
Rankin Inlet-based processor offers winter-caught char filets and pipsi
Arctic char lovers in Nunavut can look forward to finding various cuts of fish from the Igloolik area, thanks to a 14,000-pound catch Kivalliq Arctic Foods recently purchased from the Baffin region community’s fish harvesters.
The Rankin Inlet-based food processor, a subsidiary of the government-owned Nunavut Development Corp., is supplying the product to food stores throughout the territory in the form of premium filets, traditionally-prepared pipsi, and cold smoked filets and pieces.
Igloolik fishermen caught the char between January and April.
“They’re of high quality and much appreciated by our customers,” said Todd Johnson, general manager of Kivalliq Arctic Foods, adding that premium filets and pipsi are in highest demand.
The pipsi, described as a dried “checkerboard filet” of cubed morsels ready to eat off the skin, is ready to eat once thawed, Johnson said.
The company counts Igloolik as one of its top suppliers of char, which it purchases from communities throughout Nunavut.
Its priority is to make all products, including caribou meat, available in all communities of the territory.
“That’s something we’ve worked at consistently over the past year,” said Johnson. “Our goal is almost achieved.”
Kivalliq Arctic gets its supplies of fish and caribou from hunter and trapper organizations throughout the territory. Igloolik’s HTO works with local fishermen to coordinate sales.
“It’s a great working relationship and we look forward to many more years of it,” said Johnson, who counted this as the second year of the supply arrangement.
Igloolik’s senior administrative officer, Brian Fleming, agreed.
“The opportunity for local fishers to sell their winter-caught char has provided an economic boost of the community and bodes well for future developments of our local fishery,” he said.
Operating out of Rankin Inlet since 1992, when it was created by the territorial government, Kivalliq Arctic Foods processes Arctic char and caribou for sale throughout Nunavut.