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Joe Beef / Liverpool house lobster spaghetti

Montreal restaurants are boycotting lobster to support Mi’kmaq fishermen

Joe Beef, Garde Manger and others are reportedly joining a boycott of settler Nova Scotia fisheries.

UPDATED Oct. 21, 11 a.m.: Famous Montreal chef and Garde Manger cofounder Chuck Hughes has confirmed that his restaurant is among the Montreal establishments boycotting commercially caught lobster by removing lobster buns from their takeout menu. This comes in light of the violent dispute between commercial lobster fishermen and the Mi’kmaq of Nova Scotia. Following rising tensions and violence against Mi’kmaq property last week, a lobster pound was burned to the ground in a “suspicious fire” (ie. arson) in Nova Scotia on Saturday. The right of the Indigenous to earn a “moderate livelihood” from fishing is a treaty right that goes back to 1752.

Kahnawake’s Karennenhawi Goodleaf reported on her efforts to convince Montreal restaurants to join the boycott of commercially caught lobster, and told CTV that she was inspired by a similar endeavour in Nova Scotia. She says that all five restaurants in the Joe Beef network are also “boycotting all seafood and fish from settler Nova Scotia fisheries” — and one of their most famous dishes is lobster spaghetti. CTV is reporting that Verdun’s renowned Beba has joined the boycott, too, and Goodleaf told us that Plateau oyster bar Maestro SVP is also removing lobster from their menu. ■

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