- Corporate body
J. W. Hiscock Sons Limited was a Newfoundland fish merchant firm which engaged in the production and export of salt fish in Brigus, Conception Bay. In the 1930s, a plant was built in Brigus where the firm's schooners could offload fish to be stored and packed for subsequent shipment. Following the 1930s, the firm diversified, becoming involved in the general coasting trade. Shortly after incorporating in 1941, the firm invested in technology that made J. W. Hiscock Sons Limited one of the largest producers of dried salt cod in the province.
The business was founded in 1894 by Edmund Hiscock (d.1918) and his sons William J. Hiscock and John Wilcox Hiscock at Comfort Bight, Labrador, with a branch at nearby Hilton. After a few years, the firm was reorganized, with William acquiring the Hilton branch and John operating at Comfort Bight along with newer branches at Hiscock Islands and American Harbour. In 1910, John moved the headquarters of the firm to the newly purchased Frederick G. Jerrett property in Smokey, Labrador. Some time later, John turned the Comfort Bight operation over to William's son, Edmund, who operated it as a separate business. Ned, John's son, took over the Comfort Bight branch in 1941.
In 1969, a larger plant was built in Brigus that could accommodate both salt fish and fresh frozen production. In the next few years, the firm expanded its sphere of operation, establishing buying centres at many locations where fish was purchased from fishermen and shipped to Brigus for production. The firm also opened a plant at Trout River on the island's west coast, where fresh fish was purchased from local fishermen and salted before being sent to Brigus for washing, drying, and packing.
The firm moved into fresh frozen production in 1978, converting a portion of the plant for that purpose. The grandsons of John W. Hiscock also formed Hiscock Enterprises Limited to deal in frozen squid, caplin, mackerel, and dried squid. At about the same time, J. W. Hiscock Sons Limited also entered into a partnership with Oxford Frozen Foods Ltd., a Nova Scotia Company, to produce and export blueberries and partridgeberries, a move that lengthened the plant's production season. The imposition of the groundfish moratorium in 1992 eliminated the supply of codfish and terminated that aspect of the business. The firm is currently a seasonal operation (2003).