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A row of female workers fill salmon cans by hand, using their own scales. One worker has the name "Rosemary" written on the front of her apron.

Gulf of Georgia Cannery Collection courtesy of the Canadian Fishing Company CFC 3-21-4

After being cut into pieces, the fish was put into cans at the filling station.

Initially this role was filled by Indigenous and Japanese women who hand-filled the cans. In later years, European women also worked at the filling station. The fastest workers could fill 20 cans per minute or 1800 cans in a ten-hour shift. When filled, the cans were loaded onto trays that fit 12 one-pound or 24 half-pound cans. Trays were placed on the top rack of the filling tables where a supervisor inspected them and punched a ticket to record the number of trays each worker filled during a shift.

Although Automated filling machines were available in the early 1880s, they were not generally used until the 1960s because hand-filling resulted in a more appealing product that was sold for a higher price.

Two women in B.C. Packers uniforms fill salmon cans.

First Nations women filling cans. Gulf of Georgia Cannery Society Archives courtesy of the Canadian Fishing Company CFC 3-21-16.

Close up photograph showing the part of the machine where the empty cans enter and filled cans exit.

Filling machine at Paramount Cannery showing empty cans entering and filled cans exiting a filling machine, 1960. Image 1985-4-566 courtesy of City of Richmond Archives.