Employees help Cermaq achieve new salmon milestone

Cermaq thanks employees for helping it get Aquaculture Stewardship Council’s (ASC) salmon standards

By SeaWestNews

Thanks to the hard work and commitment from employees, more than 73% of Cermaq Canada’s production farms are now certified to the  Aquaculture Stewardship Council’s (ASC) salmon standard

This standard was developed with the World Wildlife Federation (WWF) and is an independent, third party organization which receives no money from the certification process.

“The ability to achieve such a high standard and number of certifications is a testament to the quality and dedication of our employees,” says David Kiemele, managing director for Cermaq Canada. “We are proud that with their help, we are showing the world that our farmed salmon is one of the most responsible and environmentally-friendly protein sources you can buy.”

Saranac Island farm, located near Tofino, was Cermaq’s 14th farm certified to this comprehensive standard. Cermaq now has 14 of 19 production sites certified, putting the company within reach of the goal of having all production farms ASC-certified by 2020.

“Sustainable solutions require dedicated employees,” says Laurie Jensen, Cermaq Canada’s Sustainability Director. “At Cermaq we have some of the best employees in the industry. This is how we can achieve and maintain such a high level of certifications.”

Third-party audits by the certification bodies show the company is farming salmon responsibly, and has procedures to minimize risks such as escapes, to ensure food safety programs are in place, and to ensure worker safety is made a priority.

Founded in 2010 by World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and Dutch Sustainable Trade Initiative (DSTI) the Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) is an independent not for profit organisation with global influence. ASC is the world’s leading certification and labelling programme for responsibly farmed seafood. The ASC’s primary role is to manage the global standards for responsible aquaculture, which were developed by the WWF Aquaculture Dialogues.

Cermaq Canada is a salmon farming company based in Campbell River, BC. The company produces fresh Atlantic salmon at 27 broodstock, nursery and production farms around Vancouver Island and operates four land-based freshwater facilities, as well as two processing plants (one contracted).

Cermaq Canada directly employs more than 250 full time workers, including 30% aboriginal as well as hundreds of secondary workers.  The Canadian headquarters are located in Campbell River, British Columbia.  Cermaq maintains eight third-party certifications (Four ISO standards, BAP, APSA, OSSE, and ASC).

Cermaq is a member of the Global Salmon Initiative (GSI). GSI members share a vision of providing a healthy and sustainable source of protein to feed a growing population, while minimizing their environmental footprint and continuing to improve their social contribution.

Earlier this month, Marine Harvest Canada’s Alexander Inlet farm was that company’s 17th farm site to be ASC certified. The site holds about 600,000 fish. B.C. salmon farmers are amongst the world leaders in adopting ASC certification, with about 15% of active Atlantic salmon farms having achieved this standard and with farmers pledging to have 100% of active farms certified by 2020.

Marine Harvest said that with 17 active certifications now, it hopes to have 24 more certified by the end of 2018, and will certify a total of about 30, depending on production schedules, by 2020 to meet its global commitment.

In addition to seeking ASC certification, The BC Salmon Farmers Association  said that all its members have committed to the  Global Salmon Initiative (GSI)  , launched in August 2013.

This initiative brings salmon aquaculture companies around the globe together to work to minimize the industry’s environmental footprint and continue to improve social contributions.


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Another BC fish farm gets ASC certified