McAuliffe meets Wanchese in Brussels

April 28, 2016

Originally Published April 28, 2016 by The Suffolk News-Herald

Representatives from Cooke Aquaculture and its Suffolk subsidiary, Wanchese Fish Co., enjoyed a visit from Gov. Terry McAuliffe on Tuesday in a place that was far from home for everybody involved.

Cooke and Wanchese officials were participating in the Seafood Expo Global in Brussels, Belgium, and McAuliffe was there during a stop on a three-nation European trade and marketing mission organized by the Virginia Department of Economic Development and the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Community Services.

The governor stopped at the Cooke/Wanchese booth during the expo to sample some of the seafood the company was featuring, including sea scallops from the North Atlantic and bay scallops and southern red king crab from Argentina, company officials said Wednesday. All are wild-caught in the company’s own vessels.

In the past, Wanchese Fish Co. — which has headquarters and a processing facility in Suffolk and vessels and other facilities in Hampton and North Carolina — has participated in the food show as part of the Southern United States Trade Association’s booth. This was its first year participating as part of the Cooke Aquaculture family of companies, according to Wanchese representatives.

Cooke’s chief executive officer, Glenn Cooke also received the Person of the Year trophy during the IntraFish Seafood Leadership Luncheon at the expo, according to a press release from Cooke Aquaculture.

IntraFish is a global media organization covering the seafood industry. Its Person of the Year Award recognizes those in the industry who effect positive change.

According to IntraFish, “Cooke’s work in expanding around the globe to make a truly geographically diverse group across several sectors has been remarkable and has laid out a blueprint for how seafood companies might look in the future.”

“The process for selecting the IntraFish Media Person of the Year is usually a challenging one, with so many executives across this industry achieving so much across this sector,” IntraFish Media Publisher Paal Korneliussen said. “This year, that was not the case. Glenn was a clear and unanimous choice among our editors.”

In recent years, Cooke Aquaculture has been transformed from a small salmon farm in Canada into a global seafood company with a diverse portfolio of seafood brands, company officials said. The Wanchese purchase in 2015 represented the company’s first venture into U.S. fisheries.

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