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Governor’s Task Force on the Economic Sustainability of Maine’s Lobster Industry Announces Selection of Consultant and Initial Public Meeting Schedule

PRESS RELEASE
For immediate release
February 12, 2009
For more information contact: Deirdre Gilbert

Following a thorough review of over a dozen proposals, the Governor’s Task Force on the Economic Sustainability of Maine’s Lobster Industry is pleased to announce that they have selected the Moseley Group to assist in the development of a comprehensive strategic plan for Maine lobster. Moseley is a consulting firm to the worldwide food and beverage industry, with extensive experience in helping companies and organizations innovate and grow. They are based in Massachusetts, but have offices in Westbrook, Maine.

In response to their Request for Proposals released at the end of December, the Task Force received a wide range of proposals seeking to assist them in addressing the charge set forth in the Governor’s Executive Order. Ron Philips, President of Coastal Enterprises Inc, and Chair of the Task Force said, “The task of selecting the right consultant was a challenging one, but ultimately Moseley stood out from the rest by describing an approach to generating a new business model that would engage all sectors of the industry, with the goal of raising profitability for everyone”.

Moseley also possesses a depth of experience with similar efforts to market products often thought of as commodities, through grower’s cooperatives. They have worked with the Colombian Coffee Federation, a cooperative of more than 5,000 coffee farmers, on their Juan Valdez brand and Ocean Spray, a cranberry grower’s collective. The Moseley team includes Tom Moseley, the President of the Moseley Group, Christine Milloff, Managing Partner, and Kristen Bailey, Senior Consultant. Before joining Moseley, Kristen served as Executive Director for the Maine Lobster Promotion Council.

Patrice McCarron, Executive Director of the Maine Lobstermen’s Association and Vice-Chair of the Task Force noted, “I am excited that the work that Moseley has proposed to do leads us clearly through a rigorous process, examining all opportunities, and ending with a clear strategy for implementation.” The Task Force is scheduled to provide their final report by April 15th.

With the consultant in place, the Task Force can now proceed to the next steps of engaging people knowledgeable in all sectors of the lobster industry in information gathering. At this time, the Task Force has planned two public meetings in which they will receive presentations from Panels comprised of harvesters, dealers, processors, researchers, and community representatives. The first meeting is planned for February 26th in Portland (exact location TBA) from 1-5 pm, and the second meeting for March 10th in Ellsworth (exact location TBA) from 1-5 pm. A session including an update on the Task Force will also be held at the Maine Fishermen’s Forum in Rockland on March 6th, from 1-2:30 pm.