SOPHIE ST- HILAIRE
UNIVERSITY OF PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR & CANADA RESEARCH CHAIR FOR SUSTAINABLE AQUACULTURE
For years, Sophie St. Hilaire Ph.D has studied the environmental and economic feasibility of a culinary green crab fishery on Prince Edward Island. In 2016, Sophie published a breakthrough paper in Marine Biology Research detailing how the biology and timing of molting could be used to generate the world’s first invasive soft-shell green crab product. Pairing Venetian tradition with modern aquaculture science, Sophie has successfully molted soft- shell green crabs and believes this product is the key to cracking the culinary market. However, her work extends beyond researching a soft-shell industry. Currently, Sophie is researching how a caviar market could add to growing market demand.
“It’s the first day of June and the water temperature in most estuaries around PEI is a little over 10C (~50F for our American friends!). We have started assessing the quality of green crab eggs for the caviar market. We will continue this project into the fall months to determine the best time to trap female green crabs for the best quality eggs, and identify where within our river systems we find the highest female-to-male ratio of crabs. We are still seeking funding to support our soft-shell crab and green crab concentrate projects.”