01/20/2015 06:37 EST | Updated 03/22/2015 05:59 EDT

Nova Scotia to hold consultations on levy to promote lobster industry

HALIFAX - A proposed two-cent per pound levy to help promote and market Nova Scotia's lobster industry will be the subject of consultations that begin later this month.

The province's Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture will lead the consultations with members of the lobster sector.

The department says the discussions are an opportunity for people to share their views on the fee, talk about what the money could be used for and how it could be collected.

The idea of implementing such a levy throughout the Maritimes was first proposed more than a year ago by a panel that was set up to examine slumping lobster prices.

Last March, it was endorsed by the region's fisheries ministers.

It would see lobster fishermen and the onshore side of the industry such as processors each pay one cent per pound of lobster caught to cover the cost of advertising campaigns and other strategies intended to promote the product.

The consultations are scheduled to run throughout Nova Scotia from Jan. 27 until Feb. 18.