2008 International Council for Small Business World Conference

Emerging Inuit Small Business from Caribou in Coral Harbour, Nunavut, Canada

Aldene Meis Mason*, Adjunct Professor, Faculty of Business Administration, University of Regina, Canada

Leo-Paul Dana, Associate Professor, Faculty of Management, University of Canterbury, New Zealand

Robert Anderson, Professor, Faculty of Business Administration, University of Regina, Canada

*Corresponding author:  E-mail: aldene.meismason@uregina.ca

ABSTRACT: The Nunavut Land Claims Agreement 1993 granted Inuit rights for subsistence and commercial caribou use. Exploratory, field based Indigenous research was conducted in 2007 in Coral Harbour, Nunavut with interviews, participatory observation and document review. Individual, community, cooperative and public companies demonstrated formal and informal entrepreneurship. Lack of infrastructure, financial resources, and business knowledge combined with remoteness, high costs, and language presented obstacles. Inuit entrepreneurs drew on traditional knowledge, culture and innovation. Inuit enterprises traded/sold carvings, dolls, jewellery, clothing, meat products, guided hunting, and tourism. Inuit specific, holistic approaches for economic development and entrepreneurship had resulted in positive community and individual impacts.

Inuit in Nunavut had never signed a treaty with France or England or Canada.  Therefore they retained their Aboriginal title to the lands they traditionally used and occupied.  After more than 20 years of negotiation, the Nunavut Land Claims Agreement (NLCA) was signed in 1993. Inuit rights to the use of use of caribou for sustainable subsistence and commercial purposes were granted in the Article 5.1.2 - “Inuit are the traditional and current users of wildlife; the legal rights of Inuit to harvest wildlife follow from their traditional and current use”.  Article 5.6.1 “… in the Nunavut Settlement Area up to the level of his or her economic, social, and cultural needs”…”to dispose freely of any wildlife harvested”.  This includes the right to sell, barter, exchange, and give, either within or outside the NSA. (5.7.30 & 5.7.31 pg.50)
Article 24 of the NLCA also requires the federal and territorial governments to adopt policies that maximize the involvement of Inuit in Nunavut business, through outright Inuit ownership, Inuit majority ownership, joint ventures with non-Inuit firms, and employment. The policy objectives are to increase Inuit participation in Nunavut business opportunities, improve capacity of Inuit firms to compete for government contracts and to have Inuit employment at a representative level.
How are Inuit developing small businesses from caribou – a keystone asset? What caribou products are Inuit people trading or selling?  What barriers do Inuit face?  How do Inuit use traditional knowledge and culture in their enterprises?  What outcomes do Inuit communities experience from participating in the global economy?  The research focused on the remote community of Coral Harbour on Southampton Island in the northwest Hudson Bay to explore these questions.

Research Methodology
This research study was exploratory and field based. It built upon a previous case study examining best practices in sustainable aboriginal agricultural ventures Kivalliq Arctic Foods (Meis Mason et al 2007). The research forms part of Meis Mason’s doctoral thesis, A Comparison Between Indigenous Sámi Herding of Rangifer tarandus and Indigenous Inuit Hunting of Rangifer tarandus: Implications for Subsistence and Commercialization.  The methodology combined case study (Yin 2003, Jensen 2001) with participatory observation (Jorgensen 1993). By snowball sampling, additional interview participants were identified (Goodman 1961). Oral history/verbal protocol was incorporated into the interviews (Yow 2005).  Supporting documentation came from News North (Kivalliq News), government documents and organization websites.
The methodology incorporated the guidelines for research involving Indigenous People from the several different bodies including Canada’s The Tri-Council Policy Statement: Ethical Conduct for Research Involving Humans 1998, with 2000, 2002 and 2005 amendments, in particular section 5 women and section 6 aboriginal people; the Association of Canadian Universities; the Northern Research Institute; the Inuit Tapririit Kanatami (2007); and the Indigenous Peoples Health Research Centre. Ethics approval was obtained from both the University of Canterbury (NZ) and the University of Regina.
Letters of Support were obtained from the Canadian Council on Small Business and Entrepreneurship and Canada’s Senator Charlie Watt. 
Representatives of the local Hunters and Trappers Association, the Inuit and Nunavut Governments, and the Hamlet (community government) were first contacted for permission to visit and do research in the community. All documents were translated into Inuktitut (Kivalliq dialect). Follow up emails were sent to confirm the phone call and provide information in both English and Inuktitut.
A Nunavut Scientist’s Research License was obtained from the Nunavut Research Institute.  A notice was put in the regional newspaper, Kivalliq News, two weeks before the visit. At the recommendation of Ron Ladd, the Coral Harbour Administrator, Meis Mason spoke on the Sudliqvaluk Radio Station in Coral Harbour, with interpreter and cultural guide Ikkummak Ivvaliajik, to explain the project and ask community members to participate. In-person interviews were conducted during June and July 2007. The structured interviews generally took 1 hour and were digitally recorded. At the end of each interview, participants had the opportunity to ask questions. Elders were provided with an appropriate honorarium.  Participants were to receive copies of the digital recordings and photographs for their personal history.
Coral Harbour (Salliq)meaning the large flat island in front of the mainland) is the only community on Southampton Island.  The nearest community on the mainland, Rankin Inlet, is accessible by air six days per week by a ninety minute flight. However, aircraft are frequently delayed due to weather or mechanical problems.  The community relies heavily on the annual sealift during which barges bring up the fuel, equipment, goods and non-perishables (including food) while the ice is out during July and August.
Ninety –four percent of the community’s population are Inuit. Inuktitut is the everyday language, with the children being taught both English and French at Sakku School which has about 300 students in K-12. Arctic College also has a small campus.  Coral Harbour has three churches, a recreation facility, a nursing station (small hospital), a two-person RCMP detachment, a daycare, a school, a radio station, and a power facility, and two retail outlets. There are no banks or credit union but the local Northern Store and Co-op provide light banking services and have an ATM.  The hamlet has a local gravel road network.  Primary modes of transportation around the community are walking, snowmobiles or all-terrain vehicle (“Hondas”), and trucks.  The roads are not paved.  Water is delivered to households weekly by truck.  Septic tanks hold waste and are also emptied by trucks. A new airport facility was built in 2005.  The Runaway Taxi provides the community’s only taxi services and makes runs to the airport as needed.  Unlike many other Nunavut communities, Coral Harbour has no sewing or crafts centre and no meat processing facility.
According to Statistics Canada 2006, Coral Harbour had 769 people (evenly split male and female).   The median age of their population is 18.9 compared to the Nunavut population of 23.1 and the Canadian of 38.8.  It had 190 private dwellings (55 were owned dwelling and 135 were rented).   The median income of all census families was $38,144.  Of the 310 people reporting earnings, 95 of those worked full year, full time.  The median earnings for persons ages 15 and over was $10,784.Composition of total income earnings amounted to 74.9%, government transfers 21.1%, and other monies was 3.6%).  The Northern Allowance the Nunavut government pays for teachers and other employees to make up the difference between the cost of living between Coral Harbour and larger southern centres in Canada for 2005-2006 was $19,162. (GNU 2005,3)
Educational attainment of the 460 people 15 years and over,  305 had no high school certificate, diploma or degree; 35 had a high school certificate or equivalent; 50 had apprenticeship or trades certificate or diploma; 40 had a college or other non-university certificate or diploma; 15 had a university certificate or diploma below a bachelor level; and 15 had a university certificate , diploma or degree. Half of the people over 25 had not completed high school. The unemployment rate was 19.4% and the participation rate was 67%.  (Statistics Canada 2006)
Southampton Island was initially inhabited by Saglernmiut, (Cormer 1910) or Sedlermiuts (Manning 1936) or Sadlermiut Eskimo (Bird 1953). They lived in circular limestone buildings partially build into the ground which had roof trusses of whale bone which supported limestock blocks (Cormer 1910).  At Native Point (an abandoned Inuit community on Southampton Island), more than 350 of these houses remain.  This is planned for the future site of a territorial park.  
Although no word for entrepreneur/ship exists in Inuktitut (Kivalliq dialect), translations are available for words like barter, trade, sell, self-reliance, self-employment, and more recently business (Inuktitut Living Dictionary).
Historically, local Inuit men and women have traded their products and services – first with explorers, then European and American whalers. Unfortunately, the local people perished in 1902 from typhoid brought by the European whalers.  The island was subsequently repopulated by Ukumiuts from Baffin Island to the east; by Inuit from Quebec to the south; and by Iviliks from the Chesterfield-to-Repulse coast of the District of Keewatin (now called the Kivalliq Region) to the west (Manning, 1936). Benett referred to the latter group as “Aivaliks from Repulse Bay (1940. p. 112).”  In the 1970’s, several Inuit from Coral Harbour moved to Arviat on the mainland.
The first trading post on Southampton Island was run by William Duvall and Henry Toke Munn of the Arctic Gold Exploration Syndicate, from 1916 – 1918.  (Harper, 1985).  A local hunter encouraged the Hudson Bay to come in 1924.
During World War II, the island was the sight of a military base for staging American aircraft to Europe. Later, it served as a base for construction of the DEW LINE operation and receiving materials for other sites.  
Primary settlement of the community occurred in the 1950’s when the federal government built the school (which Inuit children were required to attend) and the nursing station. In addition, the federal government also introduced welfare system of transfer payments and subsidized public housing.
Caribou Management
Caribou on Southampton Island had become extinct by the mid 1930’s.  Barren-ground Rangifer tarandus groenlandicus were reintroduced during 1967.  According to a local Inuk, the islanders agreed not to hunt the caribou for 15 years.  During this time, each family could harvest one caribou per year.  Because there were few predators, the herd became reestablished.  In 1977-78, Coral Harbour hunters were given a quota of 25 caribou, and this was increased to 400 for 1990-91.  In 1992, Coral Harbour allowed local Inuit unlimited hunting. (NWT ENR 1995).  Because other wildlife were plentiful, particularly marine, Inuit in Coral Harbour eat less caribou than other Inuit communities.  For population control, a commercial harvest was piloted in 1995.   In 1997, the Wildlife Act was changed to allow a commercial quota.
In accordance with the NLCA, the Nunavut Wildlife Management Board (NWMB) was established to determine the actual allowable harvests.  It considers the actual harvest levels, availability of and accessibility to wildlife, and the general economic, social and cultural conditions and circumstances of the Inuit. The harvest can be adjusted for increased consumption or use by the Inuit; and intersettlement trade between communities in Nunavut. (Note: traditionally Inuit share food with kin located in other communities as well as in times of famine).  The availability and accessibility of other wildlife species is important as well as changing consumption patterns. Under Article 5.6.31, the NWMB can allocate the surplus for existing sports and other commercial operations and to provide for the priority harvest by Hunters and Trappers Organizations and Regional Wildlife Officers for establishment and continued operation of viable economic ventures designed to benefit the Inuit.  Priority for allocation of commercial licenses is given to applications which will provide direct benefit to the NSA economy through employment of local human and economic resources. Each commercial license is granted only for a period of three years. The NWMB regularly conducts the Nunavut Wildlife Harvest Study to ensure sustainable harvest levels are maintained.
Harvesting on Southampton Island is overseen by Aivitt Hunters and Trappers Organization (AHTO). The AHTO has a powerful role in the community.  It regulates harvesting practices and techniques, allocates and enforces the community’s quotas, and sponsors viable economic ventures designed to benefit the Inuit.  The AHTO has actively assisted in developing businesses or economic development subsidiaries, sponsored local promotional and educational events, and delivered community training such as harvesting, survival, wildlife management, and guiding.  Membership in the HTO is open to all eligible Inuit residents in Coral Harbour.  The AHTO is governed by a locally elected board.

According to the 2005 Nunavut Wildlife Management Study, Coral Harbour had 283 registered hunters over a  5 year period (2001 – 2006).  Of these, 28 were intensive (regularly providing country food in the household), 104 were active (short but intensive hunting in regular but limited number of harvesting activities;  and 94 were occasional (day-trips or weekend outings for occasional hunting activities).  Caribou are reported as somewhat available.  Subsistence harvest levels of caribou on Southampton Island for period 1996-2001  (5-year mean )  were 1470 caribou . Table 1 provides the annual commercial and subsistence harvest levels of caribou.


Table 1. Southampton Island Subsistence and Commercial Caribou Harvest Levels:
































Sources: Subsistence Levels. Nunavut Wild Life Board. (2004) Nunavut Wildlife Study. pp. 674,686, 689, 692, 697. http://www.nwmb.com/english/resources/harvest_study/NWHS%202004%20Report.pdf
Commercial Levels.Dragon, J. (2002) ‘Commercial use of caribou (Rangifer tarandus) in the Canadian Arctic’, PhDthesis, Department of Renewable Resources, www.deer.rr.ualberta.ca/theses/thesisDragon.pdf


Inuit Enterprises
Dana (1995) defined entrepreneurs as people “who earned their livelihood by exercising some control over a business activity, intentionally producing more than can be personally consumed, in order to profit from such an enterprise, whether formal or informal.”  Dana (2004) described entrepreneurial activities as barter and trade, internal economic activities without transactions, covert economic activities, firm-type, and new economy – based on networks, relationships.
The formal sector of the economy would be reflected in firms issued licenses or registered by government bodies such as the Inuit Firm Registry, the Nunavut Business Directory, the Canada Nunavut Business Center listing, and the Hamlet of Coral Harbour official lists.

Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated (NTI) established an Init Firm Registry in 1994.

In 1997 there were 140 firms listed and in 2006, 292 registered Inuit firms.   As defined in NTI: “Inuit firm” means an entity which complies with the legal requirements to carry on business in the Nunavut Settlement Area, and which is: a) a limited company with at least 51% of the companies voting shares beneficially owned by Inuit, or b) a cooperative controlled by Inuit, or c) an Inuk sole proprietorship or partnership (unincorporated).  Kivalliq region had 59 Inuit firms – 4 were located in Coral Harbour.
In the NNI a Nunavut Business is defined as an unincorporated Nunavut resident proprietor, a partnership where the majority interests and benefits are held by Nunavut residents, a co-operative where 51% of the voting shares are held by Nunavut residents and a corporation where 51% of the voting shares are owned by Nunavut residents.  A Nunavut business must also lease or own business space in Nunavut, maintain resident manager in Nunavut and carry out most management and administrative functions relating to Nunavut operations in Nunavut.   A local business is defined in NNI policy as:  a Nunavut business, located in the community where the work is to be done, local resident manager, and management and administration of local activity is done in the community.
Registration on the Nunavut Business Registry sponsored by the Baffin Regional Chamber of Commerce is free.  Nine businesses are located in Coral Harbour: Aivitt HTO, Bridal and Crafts, E & E Outfitting, Esungark Hotel – Inns North, Katudgevik Co-operative Ltd. , Leonie’s Place Ltd. , Locked Antlers, Northern Stores and Sudliq Developments Ltd.
The Inuit Business Directory sponsored by PAIL had 12 listings for Coral Harbour but only 4 of these were actually local Coral Harbour businesses: Katudgevik Co-op, Leonie’s Place, Natuq Sewing and Sudliq Developments Ltd..
The Canada Nunavut Business Center listing for Coral Harbour has 27 businesses.  Accomodations & Dining: Leonie’s Place, Esungark Hotel – Inns North; Retail: B&R snack Bar, IGA Supplies, Katudgevik Co-operative Ltd., Northern Store and Leonie’s Place; Transportation and Shipping: Runaway Taxi, Calm Air Interantional, Kivillaq Air, and Eleven Mile Trek; Expediting, Contracting and Equipment Supply: Coral Harbour Automotives, GN Staff Housing Agent, NMM Enterprises, Noel’s Maintenance, Sanalagu Maintenance, Suqliq Developments Ltd., Tunniq Lumber & Supply; Tourism and Culture: Aggiq Seamstress, Aiviit Hunters and Trappers Association; Anguitimmarik Outfitting; E & E Outfitting; Kajjaarnaq Arctic Tours, Locked Antlers Outfitters, Natuq’s Sewing and Rhoda’s Bridal & Handicraft; and Technical and Communications: Nunavut Power Corporation and Sudligvarluk (FM103.9).
In July 2007, the Hamlet of Coral Harbour indicated they had issued 30 business licenses to about 22 different enterprises.
In terms of the formal sector, those enterprises associated with caribou harvesting and processing included Aiviit Hunters and Trappers Association, the Coral Harbour Development Corporation, Katudgevik Co-op Association Ltd (which sold carvings), the North West Store (which also sold carvings) and the partnership with Kivalliq Arctic Foods (a subsidiary of Nunavut Development Corporation located in Rankin Inlet).
But what about informal sector?  The first day Meis Mason was in Coral Harbour, Inuit with carvings, jewelry, prints and ulus (traditional Inuit knife) came to the door of the hotel within two hours of their arrival.  They continued to return with different products to determine what would appeal.  People who sold or traded things made from caribou were asked over Sudligvarluk (FM103.9) to participate in our research.  Interviews were arranged with carvers: Elder Jamie Nakoolak, Elder Mark Nakoolak, Bobby Eetuk, and Lucassie Nakoolak; seamstresses, garment producers and doll makers: Elder Susie Angootealak, Elder Annie Nestor, and Elder Natuk Pariyuk of Natuq’s Sewing.  Thus, entrepreneurs using parts of caribou for product included carvers, doll makers, jewellery makers, clothing producers, eco-tourism guides, and outfitter/hunting guides. However many traditional uses of caribou were not commercialized. Most of these Inuit small businesses were individual based, informal, and in survival mode.

Overcoming Obstacles To Business Development
Significant obstacles to business development included: lack of infrastructure; remoteness and poor connection to market; high costs such as transportation, energy, materials; limited access to financial resources; and lack of business knowledge and skills.
Many of these Inuit small business owners lived in public housing and thus were not able to qualify as an Inuit business. Southampton Island has little tourism and travel is so expensive the island’s visitors generally are there for business purposes. Air luggage is limited to 80 pounds including carry on. Freight rates were about $2.50 per pound. Electricity costs were 21 cents per kilowatt hour (the Nunavut government subsidizes an additional 61 cents per kilowatt hour) as compared to 7 cents per kilowatt hour in southern Canada. The extreme cold temperature lasts eight months per year versus four to five months of the year in southern Canada. In winter, blizzards are common and temperatures are -40 degrees Celsius   The Nunavut government also heavily subsidizes the price of oil,  usually purchases fuel on an annual basis between May and June for shipping in the summer months.  It offers fuel tax credits to mining and other companies operating in Nunavut.
Inuit culture and language could be viewed as both a barrier and an advantage. Inuit believe caribou is not a property and should be allowed to roam free. With Inuktitut as the primary language, many older residents are not comfortable in English. In the past, most of the government officials were non-Inuit and dealing in English to fill out the forms was very difficult.  This has changed somewhat with the NLCA. One Inuk small business operator indicated answering machines were used to handle telephone calls so a family member who spoke English could return the call and speak with the client.
Several Inuit identified that money management had been a problem.  Two Inuk carvers explained why. - In traditional Inuit culture, we were not given money.  We received credit or were given wooden sticks, it’s different now. Elder Annie Nestor, a garment producer indicated that she now required complete payment up-front to ensure that she was paid in full. Others indicated it had taken time to learn to cover their material and replacement tool costs.  The Hamlet Economic Development Officer has arranged with Arctic College to provide a basic bookkeeping course.  Micro-finances for start-up had also been addressed. The Economic Development Officer helped the local Inuit to identify grants and fill out the forms to take maximum advantage of the small tools grants and the Hunters and Trappers Support Program (which assists with purchasing sewing machines and hunting equipment).  Support for the development of the individual businesses had included direct grants for machinery and equipment, skills training and workshops, development and participation in trade shows, and use of e-commerce to connect with global markets. 
Another Inuk carver indicated that the value of sharing had affected his business as another carver had imitated his work.  This was being resolved in the courts.
A non-Inuk suggested the Inuit still live for today and not worry about tomorrow. However, several Inuit disagreed with this explaining that food had been cached for future use.
Some Inuit do not feel it is appropriate to sell caribou – food is to be shared.  (However, the authors walked around Coral Harbour asking if there was any caribou meat to buy.  They were sold a frozen piece.  Later another Inuk severely chastised them for this.)

Utilizing Inuit Traditional Knowledge and Culture
The Inuit had utilized their traditional knowledge and culture and their creativity and innovation to develop new products for the commercial caribou harvest. For example, the portable abattoir takes advantage of the -40degree Celsius weather to quick freeze the caribou suspended on metal racks in the outdoors.  Noel Kaludjak described how the original camp was based in tents with wooden floors. Today, the kitchen is in three sections, with a cooking area, serving area and mess hall.  Each module is on its own skids for easy of hauling.   Instead of one sleeping room, double duplexes are permanently located on skids as wide as the cabins.  The grey water from the kitchen and bathroom now drains out through a pipe. Some of the piping is actually flexible hoses.  Grey water and waste drains to a bag on a low profile komick (sled) – when the bag is full, its tied off and dragged away to avoid dirtying the lake.
Ron Ladd, Coral Harbour Hamlet Administrator, indicated that traditional knowledge of hunting and living on the land was key in deciding where to set up the camp to minimize the travel. The hunters harvest and transport 5,000 to 6,000 caribou during the six week period.  The dead animal must reach the portable abattoir within one hour of being killed.  Expert hunters know how to identify male vs female caribou and also they are provided an incentive for achieving head shots. 
Richard Connelly, former GM of the Coral Harbour Development Corporation said that the hunter’s skills are “awesome”, achieving 97% head shots. Working with a quality assurance expert and training the operators has increased camp efficiency - it takes 10 minutes to shoot the animal, drain the blood, and gut the   animal, and separate the joints.  From the time the animal arrives at the abattoir, it takes about 1 minute and 15 seconds to skin and trim the animal.
New equipment using the Bombardiers and the Cat trains for hauling has reduced the trips from 500 to 50. Damage to the land and vegetation as well as environmental impacts have been greatly reduced. 
The portable abattoir was upgraded to meet increased Canadian Food Inspection Agency standards as well as to achieve the coveted European Union certification. Connelly considered this an incredible achievement building on traditional Inuit harvesting skills. 
Kivalliq Artic Foods uses the caribou to make jerky and mikku which are traditional Inuit foods as well as Denver cuts.  To reduce transportation costs, KAF is trying to develop the local Nunavut market.  Rather than removing the bones, they are selling the smoked ribs locally.
The wildlife also inspired arts and crafts and provided materials such as skin, antler and bone.  Themes included Inuit legends and stories as well as the traditional roles and activities such as drum dancers, women collecting water with caribou pails and ladles, and inukshuks which were used to attract the caribou or serve as landmarks for hunting sites. The carvers received about $500 for each piece.  These were sold locally to the Northern Store, the Co-operative, or Leonie’s Place (Leonie Nappa Duffy is a licensed Arctic Trader.)  Both the Co-op and Northern Store transfer the carving s to their national head office which has retail galleries and web based sites with displays using video cams to sell nationally and globally.  The Hamlet had recently created displays in the local airport and also in the hamlet administration office.  The carvers and other artists were now being provided with business cards.  Nunavut Tourism also had a display of Coral Harbour products in the Rankin Inlet airport.
Doll making was a traditional Inuit activity which has been making a comeback.  Elder Susie Angootealak had attended a week long doll-making workshop in Rankin Inlet.  Susie showed Meis Mason her dolls – one even had the traditional crocheted hat. Suzie explained that under the government project sponsorship she could not sell any dolls commercially which were made from materials provided at the workshop.  As she didn’t have more material for the face, Suzie was going to make the faces from stone, wood, ivory. These collector dolls can be sold for $400 to $600.  Susie has since trained several women in Coral Harbour. In September 2007, seven women from the community including Susie had dolls in the Kivalliq Inuit Doll Festival held in Rankin Inlet and were able to attend.

The Inuit entrepreneurs indicated pride in their ability to use and share their traditional Inuit knowledge, culture and legends. They also expressed satisfaction and pride in the workmanship of their products. Many indicated the income could be used to assist in supporting their families.
Elders also indicated they were sharing their traditional Inuit knowledge with the young people and these were important survival skills. Some Elders indicated that this sharing provided a bridge or connection between the generations.
The Coral Harbour Community Development Corporation’s commercial caribou harvest and its partnership with Kivalliq Arctic Foods (a subsidiary of the Nunavut Development Corporation) has had very positive outcomes in terms of employment, $ return to the local economies and development of the Inuit presence in the global economy. 
For Coral Harbour, this has been the community’s biggest project of the year. At peak it employed 68 Coral residents, 99percent are Inuit. Eighty percent of those employed return each year. The annual payroll was about $500,000 Cdn in direct employment.  The majority of camp workers put in enough hours to qualify for unemployment insurance benefits - $150,000 Cdn.  Economic spin-offs were a minimum of $2.9 Cdn. million ($650K  x 4.5) for this non-decentralized community.  The harvest maintained an infrastructure investment base of $500,000 Cdn.  It also maintained and built on a strong reserve of expertise among local residents.  The harvest also helped keep caribou population in control (which was the purpose of the hunt).
For Rankin Inlet, 12 full time positions had been created.  All employees had qualified for medical clearances.  The payroll was approximately $300,000 Cdn. Economic spin offs were a minimum of $1,350,000 Cdn for the community annually.  This activity maintained a significant component of Rankin Inlet’s industrial infrastructure.   It maintained a market for caribou which had been built up from 60,000 pounds to over 220,000 pounds per year.  The result was over $1,000,000 in export earnings coming into Rankin Inlet. It also maintained the investment in acquiring EU certification.  This was a flag ship enterprise for the community of Rankin Inlet.
Carrying through on the objectives of sustainable development, a significant decline in the Southampton Island caribou population has resulted in the short term withdrawal of the commercial quota for the Southampton caribou harvest, .Coral Harbour’s commercial harvest will be postponed for a few years. This demonstrates the need for a more holistic approach and broader economic diversification. 
Policy and program approaches to entrepreneurship and economic development in remote communities of Nunavut should be Inuit specific and utilize a holistic approach. The Nunavut Land Claim Settlement has created an opportunity for Inuit people to use caribou parts and other wildlife for subsistence and commercial purposes. The Inuit are addressing the sustainable development of caribou. Significant barriers to developing Inuit businesses exist in Coral Harbour but are being overcome. Creating and running a small business in Nunavut is more expensive. Inuit people are using their traditional knowledge, culture and creativity in their small businesses. More training is necessary to assist individuals as they transition from a “crafts” to “business” approach. Policy should recognize and support that the nature of these enterprises may take several different forms. However, few of the Inuit traditional uses of caribou have been transferred into commercial products. Could the increased use of e-commerce to connect to the global market place allow for increased demand? 
The authors would like to acknowledge the support of the community of Coral Harbour and the Nunavut Government.  Funding for this research was provided by the SSHRC Northern Research Program for “Mines, Pipelines and Caribou: Aboriginal Development in Northern Canada ‘On Their Own Terms’”, Robert Anderson, principal investigator.


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