John Risley calls for moratorium on ocean-based salmon farming
Posted on May 11, 2021 | By John Risley | 14 Comments
The old adage ‘you are what you eat’ needs an update. It should be ‘you are what you eat, eats’. Modern food productions methods have changed the nutritional quality, genetics and environmental impacts of most protein sources versus their natural origins. Let’s focus on salmon.
This iconic fish is usually pictured leaping up treacherous rapids to spawn another generation which will roam thousands at miles at sea before returning, perhaps multiple times, to its river of birth. Anyone who has had the good fortune to cast a fly in pursuit of this king of fish can have nothing but respect for this vibrant, muscle-bound species’ fight for survival.
But when you show up at your local seafood vendor or choose a salmon dish from a restaurant menu, what you are likely getting is a remote cousin to its wild counterpart. It may, in fact, represent a deadly enemy to salmon’s survival. Salmon aquaculture—or salmon farming in cages in coastal areas sheltered from the ravages of the open ocean—started in Norway in the 1970s. It has since burgeoned into a globally important industry producing literally millions of tons of salmon a year. But at what cost?
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