Omega Protein Offers Behind-the-Scenes Look at Fishing Operations in New Short Film
REEDVILLE, VA–(Marketwired – April 22, 2017) – A new short film, using rare aerial footage and interviews with Omega Protein (NYSE: OME) boat captains, spotter pilots, crewmembers and employees, provides viewers a unique, behind-the-scenes look at what it’s like to work aboard a menhaden fishing vessel and harvest menhaden for a living. The film, Omega Protein: Fishing for Life, offers a new perspective on what it means to be a part of Omega Protein, one that is rarely seen by the public.
While Omega Protein has a long tradition of offering guided tours of its processing facilities to students, public officials, regulators and other visitors, because the Company’s fishermen are out on the water for days at a time, usually only the fishermen themselves are able to witness the fishing process in person. Fishing for Life is the first in-depth, up-close look at the modern menhaden fishery from the fishermen’s perspective. The film was screened this morning in Reedville, Virginia, at a christening ceremony for Omega Protein’s two newest fishing vessels.
“I couldn’t imagine being anywhere else besides working for Omega Protein or fishing,” said Omega Protein Capt. Lee Robbins in the film. “Getting out of bed, and looking forward to working and doing what you do.”
The film tracks a fishing trip from start to finish, from the spotter planes taking off before dawn to look for schools of fish, to the minute the vessels return to port to unload their catch. In between, the film documents how Omega Protein’s captains, purse boats, and crewmembers cooperatively work together to complete a safe and successful catch.
The menhaden fishery has some of the lowest bycatch of any fishery, in large part due to the precision with which Omega Protein targets its catch. This is no accident, as the film documents Omega Protein’s safe and sustainable fishing practices, and the Company’s commitment to being a responsible steward of the environment where it works.
“We have a respect for the [Chesapeake] Bay,” said Omega Protein fisherman Zach Hall. “It’s going to hurt us if we do anything to the Bay that’s going to hurt it. The Bay is our life.”
Many of the employees interviewed in the film have worked for Omega Protein for decades and are members of multi-generational fishing families. Fishing for Life tells their stories, and showcases the Company’s strong historical roots in the Reedville community.
At its ceremony today, the Company honored two women from families with decades-long ties to the menhaden fishery, Ms. Dixie Deihl and Ms. Gayle Dameron, who served as sponsors of the Company’s new vessels, the Cockrells Creek and Windmill Point, and cracked ceremonial bottles of champagne on the bows of the ships this morning.
“Most of my friends, half of them have either worked here part of their life, or their fathers worked here, or their grandfathers have worked here,” said Mr. Hall. “It’s real community-based.”
“The majority of us that have been on this boat have been on this boat for years together,” said Omega Protein fisherman George Ball. “So [it's] not just family, it’s blood.”
About Omega Protein
Omega Protein Corporation (NYSE: OME) is a century old nutritional product company that develops, produces and delivers healthy products throughout the world to improve the nutritional integrity of foods, dietary supplements and animal feeds. Omega Protein’s mission is to help people lead healthier lives with better nutrition through sustainably sourced ingredients such as highly-refined specialty oils, specialty proteins products and nutraceuticals.
The Company operates seven manufacturing facilities located in the United States, Canada and Europe. The Company also uses over 30 vessels to harvest menhaden, a fish abundantly found off of the coasts of the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico. Its website is www.omegaprotein.com.
Director of Public Affairs