Fish farm deaths, escapes raise concerns about Atlantic aquaculture industry


A recent mass die-off of salmon at a Newfoundland fish farm has highlighted transparency and environmental challenges that the region's growing aquaculture industry faces.

Northern Harvest Sea Farms says the fish died after an extended period of high water temperatures, but the incident raised public concern because of slow public disclosure and confusion over the cause of death.

The news followed the escape of approximately 1,000 salmon from a Cooke Aquaculture site in New Brunswick.

Neville Crabbe of the Atlantic Salmon Federation says these incidents illustrate some of the industry's risks and transparency issues.

Crabbe says federal and provincial legislation sometimes leads to confusion over who wields regulatory power over the developing industry.

A federal Liberal campaign promise to move away from open net salmon farming in British Columbia was met with concern from the Canadian Aquaculture Industry Alliance this week.