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World’s Salmon Aquaculture Industry Leaders Meet to Develop Standards

Draft criteria to be posted for public comment

EDINBURGH, SCOTLAND: More than 80 of the world’s salmon aquaculture industry stakeholders – including producers, NGO representatives, retailers, government representatives and scientists – met here this week to move forward with developing global standards for salmon aquaculture. The standards, when adopted, will help minimize or eliminate the salmon farming industry’s key impacts on the environment and society.

This was the 12th meeting of the Salmon Aquaculture Dialogue since it was formed in 2004. The meetings over the past two years have primarily focused on the presentation and discussion of scientific reports about the various negative impacts related to salmon farming. Information from the reports, written by technical working groups, will be used in creating the standards.

Participants at this week’s meeting confirmed the main guiding principles for addressing the impacts and offered helpful suggestions to make them more robust. The principles, which had been identified at previous meetings, include conserving natural habitat and local biodiversity, as well as protecting the health and genetic integrity of wild-caught salmon. The principles had been available for public comment for two months prior to being finalized.

Important input to the development of criteria – areas to focus on to assess each impact – also was provided. This input will be used to revise the draft criteria, which will then be posted on the Dialogue website for public comment.

Also at the meeting, participants began to brainstorm potential indicators, or what to measure in order to determine the extent of each impact.  The principles, criteria and indicators will be the foundation for the final standards, which will be measurable, performance-based and created by an open and transparent process. 

For more information, visit http://www.worldwildlife.org/salmondialogue