US - The Maine Aquaculture Association is proud that the Monterey Bay Aquarium just announced that Maine Farmed Atlantic Salmon has been given a “Good Alternative” rating from their Seafood Watch program. This is a first for Maine Farmed Atlantic Salmon and mirrors their ongoing commitment to sustainable farming practices.
Maine aquaculturists have been raising Atlantic salmon since the 1970s and as demand continues to increase, it has grown into an operation that includes 22 sites, three hatcheries and a processing plant in Machiasport, Maine.
Atlantic salmon farmers in Maine were some of the first in the world to develop a series of Best Management Practices (BMPs) designed to minimize their environmental footprint while they produce healthy sustainable food. Farmed Atlantic salmon is an excellent source of protein, essential vitamins and minerals and excellent sources of heartOhealthy omegaO3 polyunsaturated fatty acids.
The Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch looks at various factors as they determine ratings including the type of feed, origin of the stock, type of aquaculture practices employed and how the farms are regulated from a state and federal standpoint. In Maine, standards are developed in cooperation with State and Federal regulators and the environmental community to establish environmental goals over and above those required by regulation and use external audits to demonstrate compliance.
In addition, all Maine salmon farming companies participate in the Global Aquaculture Alliance Best Aquaculture Practices program, and the Maine Aquaculture Associations Code of Practice, Bay Management and Biosecurity programs. All of these programs establish additional operational and monitoring requirements.
“We have been closely watching the steady increase of demand for Farmed Atlantic Salmon and the related Maine industry as it continues to grow, improve and innovate,” said Sebastian Belle, Executive Director of the Maine Aquaculture Association.
“The Seafood Watch rating is a tangible distinction and is a direct result of the best practices and regulations we have put in place to continue to support this growing industry.”
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