Visitors to Cermaq's Canadian operations in Clayoquot Sound were greeted
(17 May) by a 'Stop' sign and ordered to follow biosecurity protocols
including disinfection of tires and shoes.
Read more via "Virus sparks quarantine on B.C. salmon farm
Watch a CHEK News (18 May) report on the 'Fish Farm Quarantine' - online here
The broadcast features Cermaq's PR flak in Canada, Laurie Jensen, who claims that IHN is not a problem.
Last year, Laurie Jensen also claimed during a public meeting in Tofino that ISA was an "East coast disease" (before ISA was reported
at a salmon farm in Clayoquot Sound on the West coast of Canada).
Jensen compared maintaining fish health in feed lot sized fish farms was
"like growing carrots" or removing "sick kids in a daycare."
Watch video online here
The last time IHN struck salmon farms in British Columbia was 2001-2003
when a full blown epidemic swept like wildfire through Clayoquot Sound
and across Vancouver Island. Here's a photo of dead farmed salmon
floating on the surface of one of Cermaq's salmon farms in Clayoquot
Sound in 2001.
For more background read "Disease Epidemic Hits Salmon Farms in Clayoquot Sound
A scientific paper - "IHN epidemic (2001-2003) in farmed Atlantic salmon in British Columbia" - showed the spread of IHN.
The BC Salmon Farmers Association (BCSFA) already have a 'Finfish Kill Contingency Plan
' (2008) in place to deal with the mort mountain.
“Vessels from farms designated as
infected or quarantined due to infectious disease concerns need to use planned
travel routes to minimize the probability of spread of disease agents to
unaffected farms,” states the report. “Upon
completion of recovery, transport and disposal, pumps, hoses, vessel holds and trucking
containers will be decontaminated with a suitable solution to prevent further spread
of pathogens, parasites, or chemical contamination.”
Read more via "British Columbia Finfish Aquaculture Waste Tissue/Finfish Kill Contingency Plan
In 2010, a 'Mass Mortality Disposal Workshop' addressed the issue of an 'Industry Viral Disease Management Plan'. According
to the BC Ministry of Environment:
“Based on the
previous two IHNV epizootics it is accepted that farming practices contributed
significantly to IHNV spread between farms and areas (Saksida, 2006).
Waterborne transmission played a role in the spread of IHNV between farms in
close proximity (Saksida 2006, McClure 2007). Retrospective investigations
suggest that rapid culling of the index case may have significantly limited or
even eliminated IHNV spread. Estimated loss was 11000mt in 2002 due to IHN
(Golder & Associates 2008).”
Read more via "Salmon Farming Industry Mass Mortality Disposal Workshop Report
In Eastern Canada, Infectious Salmon Anaemia (ISA) is ravaging Nova Scotia. CBC News reported
in March that the Canadian Food Inspection Agency had confirmed the deadly virus at Cooke's facility in Shelburne Harbour.
"It's just another nail possibly in the coffin," said Lewis Hinks of the
Atlantic Salmon Federation. "It causes us great concern no matter how
you look at it."
The Canadian Press reported
in April that: "The Canadian Food Inspection Agency ordered Cooke
Aquaculture to kill and dispose all of its salmon at a fish farm in
Shelburne Harbour, the same site where infectious salmon anemia was
detected in February during routine testing."
Susanna Fuller, a marine co-ordinator at the Ecology Action Centre, said
the spread of the disease illustrates the dangers of the farmed fish
sector. "The outbreak brings home very close to home the risks of this
industry," she said in an interview. "This is the kind of thing that
happens when we have a high density of fish being farmed in a small
Read more details via "Viral outbreak at Nova Scotia salmon farm spreads, prompting kill order
The Chronicle Herald reported
(26 April): "Several hundred thousand salmon must be destroyed due to
an outbreak of a virus at a fish farm outside Shelburne Harbour. The
farm, which is owned by New Brunswick’s Cooke Aquaculture, has been
under quarantine after infectious salmon anemia was discovered there
during routine testing in February."
Since the Canadian Food Inspection Agency ordered the fish kill, the
federal government will compensate Cooke for some of its cost. At least
one conservationist was angered by the news that taxpayers will foot
some of the bill for the disease outbreak.
“Besides the significant risk of spreading this deadly virus to
struggling populations of wild Atlantic salmon in our South Shore
rivers, it is simply outrageous that Canadian taxpayers will now have to
compensate the company for the aquaculture crop fish they’ve lost due
to their own poor practices,” said Raymond Plourde, the Ecology Action
Centre’s wilderness co-ordinator.
Read more via "Massive salmon kill ordered as virus spreads at N.S. fish farm
"Despite the concern in some circles about the recent outbreak of
infectious salmon anaemia (ISA) at Cooke Aquaculture’s McNutt’s Island
farm in Shelburne resulting in the destruction of 100,000-plus fish from
four large cages and the strict quarantine of the remaining 20 cages,
the New-Brunswick-based aquaculture corporation is likely in the near
future to be selling ISA-affected fish through their normal consumer
channels, according to federal officials," reported
South Coast Today (16 April).
Asked if consumers would be notified about any ISA virus contained in
farmed salmon, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency said that “There
would be no special labeling requirements,” because of the lack of
“human health or food safety risk” connected with ISA.
Read more via "ISA infected fish from Shelburne likely headed for supermarket shelves
In British Columbia, farmed Atlantic salmon bought in supermarkets in
Vancouver also tested positive for ISA. "There is strong evidence this
virus is European strain," wrote
Alexandra Morton in March.
Read more via "Atlantic salmon in Lower Mainland markets test positive for ISA virus: Morton
In April, Alexandra Morton reported 44 out of 45 farm salmon purchased
from the Superstore and T&T markets throughout Vancouver tested
positive for a newly identified Norwegian virus. The piscine reovirus
weakens the fish’s heart causing Heart and Skeletal Muscle Inflammation