New owners hoping to have better luck managing former cannery

7:50 PM, Mar 29, 2013   |    comments
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GOULDSBORO, Maine (NEWS CENTER) --- New owners for the former Stinson seafood cannery in Prospect Harbor say that they are hoping to create about 160 new jobs there in the time ahead.

The closed cannery had been a lobster-processing station until last year when 'Live Lobster LLC' had to close it down due to financial problems.

Garbo Lobster of Hancock Maine and East Coast Seafood which is based in Massachusetts jointly purchased the old cannery last month. Company officials say there's the prospect for 160 jobs to be created in the long term.

The two companies are planning to process lobster at the site under the name 'Maine Fair Trade Lobster.' Officials are currently working to renovate the cannery and outfit it with new equipment and hoping to have it open for business sometime this year.

The state has very few sites for processing lobster meat. Live Lobster tried to start that up at the old sardine cannery after it was closed by Bumble Bee Foods in 2010. Live Lobster failed after facing a lawsuit last year for missed payments to TD Bank.

Leaders in Gouldsboro said then they weren't surprised and claimed they had concerns about the cannery's owners. Yet selectman Bill Thayer says this time around he's hopeful the business will have better luck.

"We're just thrilled cause they're gonna do more than what Live Lobster was gonna do," he said, " I mean they're going to be processing something like 50,000 pounds a day..inconceivable to me that they're going to come up with that volume but they're very aggressive good business people."

Gouldsboro is planning to apply for a community development block grant to help 'Maine Fair Trade Lobster.' The company is looking for $550,000 from the state to help with start up costs. Renovating the cannery is expected to cost upwards of $2 million.


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