The Helicopter View: Fish Farms Around the World

[OPINION/EDITORIAL/RESEARCH, the audio of which will be broadcast over Cortes Radio as the first part of a special of Fish Farms – Sat, Feb 13, and repeated on Wed, Feb 17, 2021, Click here to access the other part of this special]

The “fish farm” issue simmering for decades on the BC Coast has boiled over again, in the controversy over DFO’s recent decision to close down open-net Atlantic salmon “farms” in the Discovery Islands and Broughton Archipelago areas. Locally, the issue is mostly being discussed in terms of First Nations sovereignty vs employment, though debate continues over the scale and impact of externalities like sea lice infestations, chemical and biohazard effluent, etc.

I’d like to back up a bit and try to put this local conflict into a larger perspective. “Fish farming” is a global issue, with a long history. Canada is only one minor player in the international Great Game of Atlantic salmon feedlots. This is such a big subject that it can’t be fully covered in a readable article; I’ve compiled a brief bibliography (of links) by topic, at the end. There are also many links and footnotes throughout the text, so readers can dig deeper.

Fish farms near Oban, Scotland by Ben Benjamin via Flickr (CC BY SA, 2.0 License)

Putting it in perspective: where we are today

“Five countries made up 95.6% of the [farmed salmon] production in 2015. Norway is the largest with a production share of 55.3% and is together with Scotland (7.6%) and the Faroe Islands (3.3%) in Europe. The second largest producing country Chile, (25.4%), is in South America, and Canada (6%) in North America. “ (footnote)

“There is little potential for further growth in countries such as Scotland and Ireland. Excessive regulatory pressure and conflicts with user groups also limit development in the United States and Canada. Salmon farming appears to have the brightest future in Chile due to ideal environmental conditions and a favorable business climate.” (footnote)

“Excessive regulatory pressure” is industry-speak for “environmental regulations.” Chile is internationally known for its weak regulatory regime, making it an attractive area for extractive industries with high “externalised costs” such as pollution. But BC is not as strongly regulated, as say, Washington State (USA) which has banned open-net pens. This, plus our coastal geography, is one reason why BC is a preferred location for Norwegian-owned salmon feedlots.

Feedlots? Yes. Feedlots.

Call a spade a spade: it’s CAFO

Let’s start by clarifying terms. A “fish farm” is not a farm in the sense of happy dairy cattle grazing in green meadows, or any other positive association we have with the word. It is a CAFO (concentrated animal feeding operation). This agribusiness acronym describes a specific practise: keeping animals in high-density enclosures with frequent feeding, to “fatten them for market” as quickly as possible at the lowest possible cost. These are feedlot fish.

Biology being what it is, keeping any normally-free-roaming critters captive in very dense, crowded conditions is a recipe for disease. CAFO of all kinds rely on chemical/medical inputs to maintain the “health” of (i.e. keep on life support) the animals who are subjected to these unnatural and pathogenic conditions. For salmonids, the main pathogens fostered and amplified by their concentrated captivity are viruses and sea lice, both of which can transfer to wild populations as well as killing as much as 20% of the captive stock annually.

All CAFO installations, whether aquatic or terrestrial, are trapped in an endless arms race: the conditions of captivity are the perfect lab culture for pathogens, with new strains emerging every few years resistant to the usual controls. CAFO depends on ever-increasing or ever-innovating chemical/medical inputs: antibiotics, biocides, disinfectants.

Despite all this, annual losses are heavy; the industry calls these “morts” and “mort picker” is a standard job at any fish feedlot. Some suggest that the increase in mortality for Scotland’s CAFO salmon may even be outstripping the industry’s growth rate. Needless to say, the industry has developed automated technology for mort removal — mostly Norwegian-designed and -patented, and a source of inbound revenue for Norway’s industrial sector.

CAFO also seek to accelerate the growth/maturity curve by any means necessary. Pigs and steers are fed antibiotics or hormones to fatten them more quickly. Salmon are tinkered with similarly, including genetic modification for larger overall size and faster growth.

Salmon CAFO on the Norwegian corporate model (that’s what we have here, as in Scotland and Chile) is done in open-net pens, using tidal currents as “no-cost cleaning”. This means that all the pathogens, biocides, effluents, antibiotics, and shed biomass generated by the CAFO are released into the ocean. This use of the world’s oceans as an “infinite sink” for industrial effluent has been traditional since the Industrial Revolution began; despite decades of science and citizen action, it continues to be the default — because it’s cheaper than taking responsibility for waste products and contaminants.

CAFO waste products cause problems world-wide, from lagoons of hog and cattle manure and urine contaminating soil and water tables on land, to the effluents that form a plume downstream of any open-net salmon feedlot on every tide. But salmon CAFO pose one additional problem. Their livestock also make successful jail breaks.

Unlike terrestrial CAFO inmates, net-penned salmon frequently escape. Chile alone may lose as many as 10 million per year. Scotland did far better, losing “only” 1 million over a 4 year period. The impact of escaped salmon varies widely from place to place, but the consensus is that they pose a danger to wild stocks. Perhaps this is why Alaska, ever-vigilant to protect its own valuable wild salmon fishery, resisted the Trump administration’s push to permit open-net CAFO in their waters.

For all these reasons — sea lice infestations, viral outbreaks, overuse of antibiotics and biocides, effluent dumping in tidal waters, and repeated escapes — open-net salmon feedlots around the world have for decades been embroiled in controversy and calls for tighter regulation and relocation. It’s not just here, and it’s not just us.

Feedlot vs wild fish at the grocery store?

Many industry apologists mock consumers who avoid CAFO salmon when they shop or dine out. The industry claims its product is equal or even superior to wild fish, and that their mission is to “feed the world” and provide “the cleanest, healthiest protein available”. Obviously their actual mission, like that of all corporations, is to reap the highest possible profit for their shareholders as corporate law requires. But aside from that, how do their claims stack up?

In order to maintain that highest possible profit margin, CAFO operations feed animals with materials they would not normally eat. In the early years of salmon CAFO, the industry used wild-caught food fish such as sardines, rendered into meal. Estimates at the time (I was writing on this subject at least 15 years ago!) were that it took between 4 and 6 pounds of wild-caught fish to grow one pound of marketable salmon. So the lower end of the food chain (small fry) was being stripped by factory trawling, to be converted into fishmeal to feed to caged salmon.

Obviously there were problems with this model. Pulling the small fish out from under the ocean food chain can lead to collapse. Stripmining coastal waters around the world for salmon-feed usurped food fisheries on which local people depended. Faced with mounting criticisms based on this net-negative nutritional math, the salmon CAFO industry started to turn to vegetable content, mostly soy protein and GMO rapeseed oil. This relieved some pressure on small fish populations, but contributed indirectly to deforestation for soy plantations (though some family-owned salmon CAFO have sourced their soy more sustainably). they also broadened the market for GMO canola, accelerating the displacement of open-pollinated crops with patented corporate property.

Switching to commodity crops for salmon feedbase also means that the aquaculture industry now competes with other food production for available agricultural acreage. While a couple of decades ago we were told that “farming the sea” would reduce the pressure on limited farmland, soil and water, it has now become an additional pressure on agricultural capacity — a new increment to the percentage of commodity crops and water we already devote to feedlots for beef and pork.

So it’s unclear, in the long view, how much longer a growing human population can continue to consume high-status foods like beef and salmon. Already, human-owned animals dominate the world: of all the mammal biomass on earth, wild animals were only 4.2 percent in 2018, and the most numerous bird species on the planet was the domestic chicken. Our food requirements and farming practises are a major extinction driver.

We now consume more seafood from “farmed” stock than wild-caught stock–which the aquaculture industry assured us would relieve the pressure on over-fished wild species. But if the UK is a meaningful precedent, the end of the BC salmon feedlot story could well be… no wild population left at all.

In supermarkets, the packaging shows pristine Scottish waters and projects an image of a clean and natural product. But look at the small print and you will see that all Scottish salmon is “farmed”.

Wild salmon is no longer fished commercially anywhere in the UK.

Instead, hundreds of thousands of fish at a time are raised in pens suspended in the open sea lochs around Scotland’s west coast and the Northern Isles. The salmon will swim around inside the pens for up to two years before being “harvested” for our dinner plates.

From just a couple of sites about 50 years ago, more than 200 fish farms now operate in Scotland, producing more than 150,000 tonnes of salmon a year.

So there is a tangle of ethical issues surrounding CAFO in general and salmon CAFO in particular. But then there’s the consumer point of view: is feedlot fish a good deal? Is it safe to eat? Can I get diseases from it? The industry often claims that it is producing the healthiest protein on earth. How reliable is that claim?

Feedlot salmon are real enough, for a given value of “real”. It’s true that their colour is carefully maintained by supplements. They don’t have access to the plankton, shrimp and other organisms whose bodies contain the compounds that give wild salmon its distinctive, rich tint. They are fed a colorant manufactured from the same marine organisms that wild salmon would eat–a fairly expensive component of their fodder, though earlier synthetic dyes were even more costly. Their flesh would otherwise be a neutral gray, which most consumers would reject at the grocery store or on their plate. (If you buy some “smoked salmon” at the supermarket and the colour is only skin deep, or comes off on your fingers, it’s probably cheap chum that’s been surface-dyed; most feedlot salmon is coloured throughout.)

Whatever the colour, is feedlot Atlantic salmon nutritionally equivalent to wild Pacific salmon? Apart from having about triple the saturated fat content, it’s quite comparable. Some studies have found higher levels of dioxins and PCBs in feedlot fish than in wild salmon; however, these results may vary considerably depending on local conditions.

Feedlot fish are probably safe to eat, despite having been raised in such overcrowded–some would say inhumane–conditions. Piscine viruses do not (so far) jump to human hosts, and sea lice are a large visible parasite removed before marketing, not a tiny organism that could infect salmon eaters.

So the main difference between feedlot salmon and wild salmon is not so much to our plate or our wallet, but to our principles and the overall health of our ecosystems and economy. If consumers choose wild salmon when they shop, it’s more an ethical than a nutritional decision.

Wild salmon is no longer fished commercially anywhere in the UK… As a precedent, this should alarm and distress us. The environmental impact of removing a keystone species like wild salmon is incalculable; BC’s coastal forest ecosystem, not just the marine food chain, depends on wild salmon. There are too many stressors on our wild population already (overfishing, logging, warming waters). Adding parasite load and viral diseases might be the last straw.

The supermarket choice we face is whether to invest in, or not invest in, a burgeoning global industry and its operating paradigm, which at present seem likely to result in the “commercial extinction” of our wild salmon. But most of us know very little about this industry. Who and what are we investing in when we buy feedlot salmon?

Who are we dealing with?

The “fish farm” concept originated in Norway (at Hitra in 1970 to be precise), and the industry is still almost wholly owned and controlled by two or three very large Norwegian transnational corporations. Mowi and Cermaq are on that list. We should bear in mind always that their Canadian operations are only a small local arm of an immense, global corporate enterprise. This lends some heavy irony to the industry’s more heated propaganda efforts, one of which which describes wild salmon activists as “financed in part by foreign funds and politically connected business people”.

While the foreign-funded and politically-well-connected feedlot fish industry does employ locals in every country where it operates — to manage the “farms” and do the dirty jobs — the bulk of profits do not accrue to the host country. This is an extractive industry.

For scale: Mowi has about 30 percent of the world market for feedlot salmon, and its gross revenue for 2019 was over 4 billion dollars. Cermaq (now for some reason owned by Mitsubishi!) is a smaller player with “only” 1.1B in revenue. Mowi is still the alpha gorilla in the living room of CAFO salmon. Unsurprisingly they are one of the most aggressive companies, and often cited in complaints.

[From Wikipedia:] Mowi’s operations have been severely affected in the south of Chile, where millions of fish have died by the disease infectious salmon anemia.[81][82] The rapid propagation of the virus has motivated the enterprise to sell some of its facilities, firing more than a thousand employees,[81] with the aim of moving its installations further south to the Aisén RegionParasitic, viral and fungal infections are all disseminated when the fish are stressed and the centres are too close together, and a spokesman for Marine Harvest recognized that his company was using too many antibiotics in Chile and that fish pens were too close, contributing to the dissemination of the ISA virus.[83] Norwegian scientist Are Nylund has suggested that Marine Harvest introduced the ISA virus to the region by importing infected eggs from Norway.[84]

In January 2017 Private Eye reported that Mowi had been depositing large quantities of the insecticide azamethiphos into Scottish waters to control sea lice in salmon. The Global Alliance Against Industrial Aquaculture called for the drug to be banned, citing risks to other species. Mowi had been responsible for the majority of an estimated 400 kg of the insecticide placed into Scottish waters in 2016.[85]

While Mowi’s promotional materials often extol the high quality, immaculate growing conditions and sustainability of “Norwegian farmed salmon,” it appears that these claims only apply to the home industry in Norway itself–where it’s far more tightly regulated and policed than anywhere else in the world. Elsewhere, it’s the Wild West. Elsewhere in the world, Marine Harvest (Mowi’s previous name) became a sufficiently tarnished brand that they felt a need to relabel it.

The Battle of BC

As the industry’s externalities became more obvious and legislators worldwide moved towards higher environmental standards and tighter regulation, the industry did what industry does. It started to fight a rearguard action in countries where regulation was slack or had not yet caught up with the issues–such as Canada.

Particularly in Norway, a public and political will was clearly manifest as early as 2011 to “green” the CAFO salmon industry. Norwegian feedlot salmon corporations have been moving actively in their home country to comply, investing hugely in both off-shore and land-based alternatives to open-net pens in wild salmon habitat. But elsewhere in the world, they continue to fight, delay, and obstruct regulation in an effort to maintain their open-net pen operations as long as possible. In Canada, the Harper government as late as 2014 encouraged expansion of open-net salmon feedlots, and the industry invested accordingly. It’s unsurprising that they’re fighting to preserve that investment–or at least to drag their feet long enough to amortize a chunk of it.

In every country where open-net salmon CAFO has been established, the same pattern has emerged. Resident salmon stocks have been reduced, and the overall health of remaining stocks has declined. In every location, citizen opposition inevitably begins to grow as the environmental costs are first noticed, then measured and documented. Local anglers, fishers, and environmentalists commonly form organisations and take action to oppose the open-net CAFO model, demanding that their governments do something about it.

The ensuing script is familiar by now, whether we’re looking at mining, petroleum, industrial agriculture, tobacco, or any other high-profit sector with expensive externalities. Predictably, local citizen groups are out-spent and out-politicked by the transnational corporate entities, whose pockets are for all intents and purposes infinitely deep. Predictably, the industry hires PR pros to churn out reams of pro-industry advertorial, and tame scientists to dispute the findings of government panels, independent academics and citizen scientists. Predictably, the industry attacks its critics, attempting to discredit them. The more threatened it feels, the more public opinion starts to tip against it, the more personal and vicious those attacks become.

Rachel Carson is now considered a heroine of Anglophone history; her book Silent Spring sounded the alarm on the grotesque overuse of DDT and its impact on bird populations, and is often regarded as the founding document of modern environmentalism. But few now remember the defamation campaign against her that was the pesticide marketers’ last resort.

History certainly rhymes: our own local salmon activist Alexandra Morton is repeatedly dismissed and defamed in the feedlot salmon industry PR website SeaWestNews; their lead writer Fabian Dawson goes so far as to refer to her dogged defence of wild salmon as “conspiracy theory” and even compares it with QAnon. The tabloid quality of their coverage extends to any opponent of open-net CAFO: SWN claims that First Nations activists, for example, are “manipulating” treaty rights in a quest for cash. The intense hostility of these editorials from SWN suggests to me that the industry knows the writing is on the wall and reform is imminent.

A classic colonial relationship?

This pattern of discovery, documentation, calls for reform, and industry pushback has recurred in every area where open-net salmon CAFO has been established. BC is not a special case. We are just one more place experiencing a colonial extractive dynamic, selected for exploitation because of our natural advantages and (relatively) weak legislative environment.

I call the relationship colonial even for non-native Canadians, because that’s the most accurate technical term for a system in which natural resources in one part of the world are used up to generate profits elsewhere in the world. The resources being used up in BC are, in essence, our wild salmon stocks and the health of our near-shore marine ecosystems. It’s cheaper to use them up (for free) than to take the costlier route of operating salmon feedlots more responsibly.

Meanwhile, the lion’s share of profits accrue to Norway-based, foreign-owned corporations. And the Campbell River area gets (allegedly) 1500 jobs. This author would call that crumbs from the overlords’ table. It’s a symptom of how hollowed-out North American economies have become over the last 30+ years of neoliberalism, that those 1500 jobs look attractive enough to trade for a keystone of both our our marine and forest ecosystems.

Classical colonial extraction dynamics invariably include a “comprador” class of local people. These individuals are offered employment and even some share of the profits, in exchange for their cooperation with the extractive industry as labour, middlemen, or enforcers. This comprador class serves as a highly motivated buffer between the impacted population and the extractive industry’s real, foreign ownership.

The functionality of this model is pretty clearly on display as local (settler) governments and CAFO employees go to bat against their own domestic regulators and reformers at the Federal level, to preserve and extend an industry that is actually removing real wealth and prosperity from their country. So far, only First Nations groups and embattled environmentalists seem to realise that essential wealth is being removed and very little received in return.

In recent decades, weak neoliberal governments and vast concentrations of wealth have encouraged large corporations to consider themselves equal to, or even more powerful than, sovereign nations. The latest chapter in the Feedlot Salmon Wars: Mowi, Cermaq and Grieg have filed suit against the Canadian government, claiming they did not have sufficient notice of the proposed closures in our area or any opportunity to respond to the case against their operations, and therefore the Federal decision to protect BC wild salmon by removing the most dangerously-situated feedlots should be set aside.

It seems pretty clear to this writer that the case against their operations has been adequately documented — worldwide, not just in BC — for going on two decades. What they really want is to go on treating BC as a backward colonial outpost with a weak, complicit comprador government. Under the Harper regime that was exactly what they were dealing with. Let us hope that the Trudeau Junior era is a different… kettle of fish.

Local government’s track record

In 2008, early studies had already documented the potential dangers of open-net pen CAFO in BC waters. In 2009, the SRD rural directors approved the location of open-net CAFO in the most vulnerable waters in our local area: the route through which migrating salmon pass when they return to spawn. During the current controversy, as Roy Hales uncovers in his recent article, both the Campbell River City Council and SRD read into their minutes exclusively submissions from the salmon feedlot corporations and their local proponents.

quick search of the SRD minutes revealed six items from Cermaq Canada since late 2018, but none from scientists critical of fish farms.

The city of Campbell River minutes were even more revealing. There were 56 entries for MOWI Canada West, 50 for Cermaq Canada and 41 for Grieg Seafood BC Ltd

By way of contrast, there are no direct communications from critics of the industry like independent biologist Alexandra MortonStan Proboszcz from the Watershed Watch Salmon Society or Kristi Miller-Saunders, head of the DFO’s molecular genetics laboratory at the Pacific Biological Station in Nanaimo

These are the same elected officials who presently complain that the Federal government did not properly consult them or consider their point of view. But they themselves did not solicit, receive or read in any arguments from wild salmon defenders, First Nations, or even area residents whose livelihoods depend on wild salmon — even though the issue has been openly (and loudly) controversial for 15 years.

Those who are presently agitating for the continuation — and even expansion — of open-net salmon CAFO situated directly on the migratory routes of BC’s remaining wild salmon, are positioning themselves on the wrong side of history. They were on the wrong side of history in 2009, and they have apparently learned nothing since.

Going forward: what are the alternatives?

The salmon feedlot business in BC is exploiting a global backwater, dragging its feet in an attempt to squeeze out a few more “cheap” years from the irresponsible net-pen model. Tahsis Mayor Martin Davis accurately described it as an “obsolete and environmentally harmful technology.” Obsolete and harmful technologies traditionally continue to be used in colonial backwaters long after they are banned at home.

However, elsewhere in the world, interest (and investment) is surging in RAS technology. In Recirculating Aquaculture Systems, water is recirculated and filtered, rather than allowed to flow through carrying biohazards and chemicals away with it. Our own ‘Namgis Nation has a pilot project underway; BC government has been clearly signalling its intention to move away from open-net pens for several years. Land-based operations are increasing at a rate described as “alarming” by industry website Mowi itself is now seriously discussing moving towards shore-based operations.

The probable future of fish CAFO for all species is land-based. Though there are also proposals for large-scale offshore salmon feedlots, safely distant from wild fish migration routes, it’s unclear how these will be maintained in face of increasingly violent global weather conditions, and whether the enormous cost of construction will render them unprofitable. Not everyone is convinced they will be that much of an improvement.

A more radical (and more ethical) solution would be for humans simply to stop eating a top predator fish, like salmon, and browse lower on the food chain. “Farming” salmon is essentially farming wolves rather than cows; salmon are not placid herbivores, but far-ranging adventurous carnivores. They are a near-apex species, just one step down from charismatic warm-blooded predators like seals, sea lions, and orcas.

Unfortunately, the initial enormous wealth of the wild salmon stocks of the world — recklessly exploited for over a century — accustomed billions of humans to regard this species (along with tuna) as “the” fish, most others being considered inferior. The “farming” industry picked up the slack to meet global demand as the over-exploited wild stocks started to fail — possibly triggering a Jevons Paradox. But we are stuck with it for the moment: appetite for salmon as a standardised commodity product has been firmly established around the world.

Unfortunately, through the narrow monetarist lens of the investors and managers who own and run the world’s largest fish CAFO corporations, those failing stocks of wild salmon look less distressing than they would to you or me. From where they sit, that decline looks more like the elimination of a competitive product and an increase in market share. There’s no downside for them in destroying wild salmon stocks; but there’s a huge downside for BC.

There’s no motive for the salmon CAFO megacorporations to play nice; and it’s unlikely that we’ll convince humanity to lay off the salmon dinners any time soon. So the practical alternative is to regulate and police the industry at least as closely as its home country of Norway currently does; to bring BC into the modern era and out of its colonial backwater status; to honour First Nations treaty rights, food fisheries and territorial sovereignty; and to use governance and law to force the salmon CAFO corporations to clean up their act.

References (by topic)
(stars indicate particularly useful reading)

Worldwide overview and history

Worldwide controversy:
Australia (2019) Fish Farms Under Fire in New Patagonia Documentary
USA (2018) After 3 Decades, Washington State Bans Atlantic Salmon Farms
Ireland (2019) The Problem With Farmed Salmon
USA (2007-) Federal Research on Impacts of Salmon Farming
USA (WA) The Hidden Cost of Salmon Farming
Canada (2018-21) Atlantic Salmon Federation Article Index
UK (2020) Net Loss: The High Cost of Salmon Farming *
US (2008) New Studies Show Salmon Farms Destroy Wild Stocks
US (2009) Chile’s Salmon Farms on the Verge of Collapse
UK (2019) Scottish Salmon Farming Faces Down Its Environmental Critics
US Chilean Farmed Salmon on SeafoodWatch List
Reuters (2015) Chilean Salmon Addicted to Antibiotics
UK (2014) Fish Farms Are Destroying Scottish Wild Salmon
Canada (2020) Norwegian Salmon Firms in Price Fixing Scandal
USA (2019) Alaska Continues to Resist Trump Administration Fish Farm Push

What they eat, and us eating them:
(2019) Is Farmed Salmon Bad For You?
(2019) What They Eat Matters Too
(2012) Factory Fed Fish: How the Soy Industry is Expanding Into the Sea
(2019) Norwegian Salmon Coop Kisses Brazilian Soy Goodbye
(2019) 44 Norwegian Salmon Farmers Ditch Brazilian Soy
(2013) Intake of Farmed Atlantic Salmon Increases Insulin Resistance in Mice
(2019) What’s Salmon Feed Really Made Of?
Is Farmed Salmon Really Better than Beef?
(2015) Sustainability of Salmon Farming in BC
The Fallacy of “Organic” Open-net Pen-farmed Salmon

Alternatives to open-net pens:
(offshore) SailMar Buys Into Plans for Huge High-Seas Salmon Farm
(2019) List of the Leading Land-Based Salmon Farms in the World
(2021) Norwegian Land-Based Firm “Smart Salmon” Aiming for IPO
(2018) Norwegian Aquaculture Firm to Invest up to $500M in Belfast Land-Based Facility
(2020) Asian Land-Based Salmon Farms Excite Investors
(2020) The Rise of the Land Salmon
(2017) Is There a Better Way to Farm Fish?
(2019) AquaMaof Farms 17 Different Species On Land

Aquaculture Escapes a Growing Problem
Ecological Risks Associated with Farmed Fish Escapes
(2020) Mowi Faroe Islands, 20,000 escaped salmon
(2019) Mowi BC, 21,000 escaped salmon
(2018) Mowi Chile fights 5.1M UKP fine for 690,000 escaped salmon
Industry records of major escapes (“it’s OK, we can insure the biomass”)

The Battle in BC:
(2017) A Timeline of Salmon Farms in BC *
History of Litigation Involving BC Fish Farms *
(2009) SRD Opens Door To Fish Farming in the Jugular of the BC Coast
(2018) Swanson Occupation: the Battle for Wild Salmon
(2018) Nine Reasons We Want Fish Farms Out of BC Waters
(2018) Sport Fishing Institute of BC Concerns Re Fish Farms
(2018) Why Does British Columbia Still Allow Atlantic Salmon Farming?
(2017) An Indigenous Elder Responds
(2019) Fish Farms and the Decline of Pacific Wild Salmon
(2018) A Deep Dive Into the Controversy of BC Fish Farming *
(2020) How BC’s Salmon Farmers Fell Behind the Curve

In Their Own Words: Industry Proponents, Players, Promoters
(2019) Blogger Craig Medred argues against the Alaska ban on fish farms
(2019) Mowi: Salmon Farming Industry Handbook
SeaWestNews web site: industry advertorial factory (and attack dog)

Corporate Power: how industries push back when challenged
A Brief History of Food Libel Laws
Ag-gag laws: muzzling whistleblowers
How To Silence an Environmentalist in Five Easy Steps
(2013) Wild Salmon Activist Forced to Pay Damages to Cermaq
(2016) Marine Harvest (now Mowi) Sues Alexandra Morton for Trespass
(2017) Timber Industry Sues Forest Defenders: Weaponised Lawsuits

Environmentalist sheroes
Ten Female Environmentalists Everyone Should Know
Rachel Carson vs DDT: a history
Alexandra Morton (wikipedia)
(2012) Alexandra Morton Nets Two Academic Honours

This article was originally published on Feb 7 and audio aded on Feb 10, 2021. Updated to add another link about Mowi, Feb 18.

[Photo: Aerial View of Fish Farms off the Turkish Coast, Bernhard Lang]

2 thoughts on “The Helicopter View: Fish Farms Around the World”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.