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Trout Aquaculture Dialogue Kicks Off in November

New Initiative Raises Dialogue Count to 10 Species

WASHINGTON, DC: The process of creating the world’s first set of credible standards for minimizing the key environmental and social impacts of the trout aquaculture industry will begin in November, when the inaugural meeting of the Trout Aquaculture Dialogue is held.

The world’s leading trout farming experts and stakeholders are expected to attend the open meeting, to be held Nov. 19-20 in Copenhagen, Denmark, one of the top regions in the world for producing trout. They will focus on farmed freshwater rainbow trout, which is considered a delicacy in many nations and is one of the oldest types of aquaculture in the world.

"We are confident that, by addressing sustainability, the Dialogue process will add further value to our aquaculure products," said Brian Thomsen, director of The Danish Aquaculture Organisation. "So it is a win-win situation for everybody. We welcome this new initiative and are thrilled that it will kick off in our own backyard."

One of the main goals of the meeting will be to identify the key environmental and social impacts related to trout farming and create the guiding principles for addressing each impact.

"Almost all of the trout we eat comes from a farm, so reducing the impacts from this type of farming is critical," said Dr. Aaron McNevin, aquaculture specialist for World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the organization that will be convening the meeting. "Through the Dialogue, we’ll use the best science and get input from as many people as possible in order to create the most robust standards for the industry and the environment."

At the November meeting, Dialogue participants also will develop the criteria that will provide direction on how to reduce each impact. At future meetings, participants will create indicators that will address how to measure the extent of each impact. All of this information will be the framework for developing measurable, performance-based standards.

Other agenda items will be creating a steering committee to manage the Dialogue, as well as identifying research that needs to be done to address any areas of disagreement between Dialogue participants and fill information gaps related to trout aquaculture.

If you would like to attend the meeting, contact Christoph Mathiesen of WWF at c.mathiesen@wwf.dk by November 1. For more information about the trout Dialogue, go to www.worldwildlife.org/troutdialogue.

The trout Dialogue is one of seven WWF-initiated Dialogues underway globally. Standards also are being developed for salmon, tilapia, shrimp, pangasius, abalone and four types of molluscs (clams, scallops, oysters and mussels). For more information about the Dialogues, go to www.worldwildlife.org/aquadialogues.