World’s first octopus farm in deep water over welfare
CONTROVERSIAL plans to build the world’s first commercial octopus farm should be scrapped amid concerns for the animals’ welfare, campaigners have said.
The farm on the Spanish island of Gran Canaria would produce around one million octopuses a year for food, according to the proposals from fishing group Nueva Pescanova.
However animal rights activists have warned that the plans – which would see hundreds of octopuses kept together in tanks and killed using ice – could lead to stress, poor welfare and even cannibalism.
Elena Lara, from animal rights group Compassion in World Farming, said: ‘[Octopus farming] will inflict unnecessary suffering on these intelligent, sentient and fascinating creatures, which need to explore and engage with the environment.’
Dr Marc Cooper, from the RSPCA, said: ‘[Octopuses’] suitability to be farmed is highly questionable and there is also a significant gap in knowledge on how to properly care for [them].’ Nueva Pescanova has denied that the octopuses will experience ‘pain or suffering’.