My industry isn’t staying static. We are constantly improving and always striving to be better for the environment, the fish, and people.
By Samantha Bacchus McLeod
The newly unveiled Youth Council of the BC Salmon Farmers Association (BCSFA) is all about greening forward for sustainable aquaculture to feed Canada and the world. This strong group of young individuals, who are already making waves in aquaculture, will act as advisors for concepts brought forth by salmon farmers and as seafood ambassadors for BC. Over the next few months, SeaWestNews in a special series of Q and A presentations, will explore how members of BCSFA’s Youth Council play a role in British Columbia’s Blue Revolution. This segment on BC’s Blue Revolution features Amanda Luxton/Assistant Manager, Big Tree Creek Hatchery, Mowi Canada West, of the BCSFA Youth Council.
Tell us a bit about yourself.
“I was born here on the Island, but my dad was in the Navy and we were moved to Nova Scotia when I was still quite young. I returned to the Island after I graduated….My family still lives on the East Coast, I am the only one on the on the West Coast.”
Do you like living on the island?
“I love being around any type of water, freshwater or salt, doing any sort of activity. I enjoy spending time on the river, fly fishing, or on the beach and diving in the ocean around the Island…this is where I want to be.”
What inspired you to join the aquaculture industry?
“I was drawn to the industry while I was attending school in Nova Scotia, so I ended up taking an Introduction to Aquaculture course and got hooked. The classes were small and hands-on. From that course I decided to do a minor in Aquaculture. As soon as I graduated from Dalhousie University in 2013 with a Bachelor of Science, I applied for a job out on the West Coast…Now I work with our team to ensure that daily tasks and projects are completed, and that the fish we raise are happy and healthy.”
What do you think are the most crucial issues facing salmon farming in BC?
“I think the most critical issue facing salmon farming in BC would be lack of education to the general public about what we do. Just in the short time that I have been in this industry the change in processes and technology is amazing. My industry isn’t staying static. We are constantly improving and always striving to be better for the environment, the fish, and people.
But, with many anti-fish farming voices out on social media and in the news it makes it very hard for us to get heard so we can share the facts of this industry.”
What would you say to those people?
“That we who work in this industry are passionate about what we do and care so much for the salmon we raise. For me, being able to show people what we do and why we love to do it really is all we want to do.”
How do you see the future of fish, both farmed and wild, in BC?
“I see both fish farming and wild salmon in a cohesive relationship. I truly believe that we need both to survive. Wild stocks cannot feed the world on its own and we will need salmon farming to help take the stress off those wild stocks…the population of the world is increasing so rapidly and we are already using so much land for agriculture, so being able to use the ocean in a safe and effective manner will be really good for our future food security.”
Your favourite seafood dish and why do you like it?
“I like all types of seafood but my most favourite seafood dish would be a tie between crab and lobster, every time I go home to visit my family lobster is always on the menu!”
Meet more young leaders from the aquaculture industry on our site.