Land plans for salmon fu­ture

Tasmanian Country - - NEWS -

GROW­ING salmon to full size in land-based fa­cil­i­ties is yet to be­come a vi­able op­tion, in­dus­try ex­perts say.

Salmon in­dus­try heavy­weights from around the world were in Ho­bart this week for the Global Salmon Con­fer­ence run by the In­sti­tute of Marine and Antarc­tic Stud­ies.

They in­cluded Atli Gregerson from the Hid­den Fjord com­pany in the Faroe Is­lands, Thierry Chopin, a marine bi­ol­o­gist in Canada and Pa­trick Tigges from Bil­lund Aqua­cul­ture, a Dan­ish com­pany spe­cial­is­ing in land fa­cil­i­ties.

Grow­ing salmon solely in land-based fa­cil­i­ties has been sug­gested by some en­v­i­ron- men­tal groups as a so­lu­tion to the issues faced by the Tas­ma­nian in­dus­try.

Mr Tigges said the idea re­mained ex­per­i­men­tal around the world with sig­nif­i­cant chal­lenges be­fore it could be vi­able.

How­ever, Mr Tigges said there were ben­e­fits to grow­ing smolt for longer pe­ri­ods on land, in­clud­ing lower dis­ease risk and sig­nif­i­cant re­duc­tion in the time the fish spend at sea, up to eight months.

“We are see­ing an in­creased de­mand for sys­tems for big­ger fish, sim­ply be­cause a slightly big­ger smolt is a more ro­bust fish,” Mr Tigges said.

Huon Aqua­cul­ture has plans to grow smolt on land with a new fa­cil­ity at Whale Point in Port Huon.

Mr Gregerson high­lighted a need for strong biose­cu­rity reg­u­la­tions and trans­parency.

The Faroe Is­lands in­dus­try had to make big changes fol­low­ing a collapse in the 1990s.

“Pro­duc­tion in the Faroes was prob­a­bly the worst in the world . . . we had the poor­est prod­uct, we had the poor­est growth . . . the high­est mor­tal­ity,” Mr Gregerson said.

He said the in­dus­try was now one of the world’s most sus­tain­able with stronger biose­cu­rity help­ing lift prod­uct qual­ity and re­duce mor­tal­i­ties.

Dr Chopin stud­ies aqua­cul­ture where mul­ti­ple species are farmed near each other. Tas­sal is do­ing this at Oke­hamp­ton Bay farm, where salmon is grown along­side sea­weed.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.