From humble beginnings to a 500-employee fish and seafood company

Lori Kennedy and her husband Jim were Cape Breton fish plant workers in their 20s when they saw hard times coming. The Atlantic cod fishery was collapsing, and their region would never be the  situs slot online same.

Instead of falling into despair, they quit their jobs and took a plunge, starting their own business unloading fishing boats. They overcame humble beginnings, being swindled and the loss of Lori’s brother at sea, all the while expanding their business. Louisbourg Seafoods now includes several fish plants, 13 fishing vessels and 500 employees.

When the recession hit, they faced hard times again. But the enterprising couple managed to hold on by diversifying into Europe and Asia. Through it all, they’ve maintained their values of caring for their community and for an ocean that has been unforgiving but has also sustained a way of life.

Here’s what Lori Kennedy has to say on:

…her beginnings as an entrepreneur

Both me and my husband Jim were fish plant workers in Louisbourg, Cape Breton, in the 1980s. Jim and I—all the plant workers—knew what was coming before the cod fishery collapsed. The fish were getting smaller. People realized fish resources were being taken out of the water that never should have been taken.

My husband left the plant in 1984. I left in 1986 to get an education because I only had Grade 8. I got my GED and went to business college for a year. But that wasn’t enough so I went to university and got an accounting degree.

We started the business in 1984 with a small crew of six unloading boats that would come into port. It was just small stevedoring. That division is still part of our business.