Yvon Chouinard (Founder & Owner, Patagonia, Inc.)I’ve personally witnessed the damage to our oceans that open net salmon farms have caused in the U.S., Canada, Chile and Norway. They are also producing a toxic product that should never be eaten by humans or even our pets. We already know that there are better ways to farm, but will we have the imagination and courage to do the right thing for our home planet?
Sea lice attach to and feed on Atlantic salmon and other related species, such as trout and char. It is not uncommon for wild salmon to have sea lice to some extent, but when thousands of salmon are placed in an open net pen, it creates ideal conditions for the lice to multiply. Sea lice live on the skin cells, mucus and blood of the fish, and in large amounts they can eat the fish alive. The consequences for the fish can be anemia and fluid imbalance, and in some cases it may lead to death.
Open net pens provide no barrier to the outside environment, giving sea lice easy access to wild fish. Salmon smolts are small and especially vulnerable to sea lice. Entire stocks of wild salmon have become nearly extinct due to close proximity to open sea cages infested with sea lice.More about sea lice
Kjersti Sandvik - Fiskeribladet:Icelanders are taking a great risk if they are planning to make the same mistake we did here in Norway. They are endangering the Icelandic salmon stock. This type of farming is a great risk
In Norway it is estimated that the wild salmon population currently consists of only 530,000 fish. The population has halved in the last 20 years and fish farming in open net pens is considered the largest man-made threat to wild stocks.
Norway is the largest producer of farmed salmon in the world, with a yearly production of 1.2 million tonnes. The industry has had catastrophic environmental impacts in Norway, with reported annual escapes from farms of approximately 200,000 fish – four times the wild population.Learn more about Norway
There are two main methods for farming salmon: using open or half-closed net pens, and using containment systems or tanks. The choice of method depends on whether the farm has the ability to control inflow, drainage, and waste production.
With open net pens, vulnerability to currents and marine activity results in waste falling freely to the sea floor or into the surrounding environment, releasing with it sea lice, microbes, and viruses carrying diseases. With a closed system, however, farms have more control over current, oxygen content, temperature, and waste, elminiting these risks.Learn more
We need to utilize closed containment systems.