Ice­land poll finds huge sup­port for salmon farm­ing

Fish Farmer - - News -

THE in­hab­i­tants of the West­fjords re­gion of Ice­land have over­whelm­ingly come out in favour of fish farm­ing fol­low­ing a spe­cial tele­phone poll car­ried out among its in­hab­i­tants.

The poll was con­ducted by the mar­ket­ing or­gan­i­sa­tion MMR on be­half of the town of Bol­un­garvik, a com­mu­nity lo­cated on the West­fjords penin­sula.

The area is likely to see the large scale ex­pan­sion of the salmon in­dus­try over the next few years.

The re­sult showed that 90 per cent of peo­ple polled said they took a pos­i­tive view of aqua­cul­ture, with just five per cent against. The re­main­ing five per cent of­fered no opinion one way or the other.

Calls were made to 235 peo­ple aged over 18, out of an el­i­gi­ble adult pop­u­la­tion of 647, a high pro­por­tion for such a sur­vey.

Around 60 peo­ple re­fused to an­swer, leav­ing 159 re­sponses, rep­re­sent­ing a quar­ter of the pop­u­la­tion.

MMR said 66 per cent of those ques­tioned took a very pos­i­tive ap­proach to­wards salmon farm­ing; 20 per cent were ‘rather pos­i­tive’, and just five per cent held ei­ther ‘very’ neg­a­tive or ‘rather’ neg­a­tive views.

The poll­ster said that while there was lit­tle marked gen­der dif­fer­ence, men were gen­er­ally more in favour than women, with a ra­tio of 91 per cent to 84 per cent.

The ‘we sup­port salmon farm­ing’ view was shared across all age bands, but found to be strong­est in the 18 to 29 group, where ev­ery­one was in favour.

Some older peo­ple were slightly more scep­ti­cal, with 11 per cent of those in the 68 plus group tak­ing a neg­a­tive stance.

In­ter­est­ingly, Bol­un­garvik is one of Ice­land’s old­est fish­ing out­posts, which has seen bet­ter days. Such com­mu­ni­ties see salmon farm­ing as a way of restor­ing their eco­nomic for­tunes.

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