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Newfoundland ISA Outbreak

24 December 2012

CANADA - Another outbreak of infectious salmon anemia discovered at a Newfoundland south coast aquaculture site. It has only been six months since the last outbreak of this serious disease was confirmed in Newfoundland.

Bill Taylor, President of the Atlantic Salmon Federation said: "This is unacceptable and, as we have said before, shows the industry’s poor management, lack of emergency planning, and inadequate husbandry practices along with the government’s poor oversight and lack of concern for threatened wild Atlantic salmon populations.”

“The transfer of ISA, other diseases, and sea lice to wild and farmed salmon could all be eliminated with the use of land-based, closed containment aquaculture systems”’ adds Mr Taylor.

ASF and the Conservation Fund Freshwater Institute, of Shepherdstown, WV, have proven the effectiveness of land-based aquaculture facilities, where salmon are produced without the use of vaccines, antibiotics, or harsh chemicals to control disease and sea lice. All water is recycled, and all wastes are captured. An added bonus is that these salmon cannot escape and breed with wild salmon, weakening the wild gene pool.

For now, 350,000 farmed fish at a Cooke Aquaculture site have been ordered destroyed by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency because of another ISA outbreak.

“This disease, other diseases, and sea lice will continue to plague the aquaculture industry, wild Atlantic salmon, and other marine species, as long as our governments continue to promote and allow the expansion of open net cage aquaculture in our bays,” continues Mr Taylor.

To eliminate these problems in the future, the Atlantic Salmon Federation, along with other concerned conservation groups, is advocating that the Federal and Provincial governments stop the expansion of open-net pen aquaculture in all provinces and transition to land-based systems that are environmentally friendly.

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