Association renews plea for land-based aquaculture

After a second possible outbreak of infection on the south coast of Newfoundland, the Salmon Preservation Association is renewing its call for land-based aquaculture.

Earlier this year, almost 500,000 fish were destroyed, following an outbreak of Infectious salmon anemia in the St. Alban's area.

John McCarthy, president of the association, says land-based aquaculture would benefit rural areas of the province.

"If you went land based, every rural area in Newfoundland could sustain an aquaculture industry," McCarthy said.

"The fish is obviously is going to cost a little bit more money but … I think there's a market out there for disease and penicillin free and lice free and chemical-free fish."

While the association has issues with present and proposed aquaculture operations, McCarthy said it is in support of greener aquaculture.

"We're not against aquaculture — we're just saying that what they're doing down here, it seems to me that they want success at any risk, he said.

"The fact that they're going to use some of these chemicals that they're proposing using tells me that they're pretty desperate."

Just over a week ago, Health Canada authorized the temporary use of a pesticide to control sea lice at provincial salmon farms.

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