Big plans for aquaculture
By Liza Mayer
The Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador has big plans for its aquaculture industry, including doubling its Atlantic salmon production to 50,000 metric tonnes annually and mussel production to 10,750 metric tonnes annually by 2020.
By Liza Mayer
Atlantic salmon is the major commercial salmonid species farmed in the province and last year was a banner year for the province with 25,411 tonnes of farmed salmon production.
The new targets were announced today as part of a 28-point plan to also more than double the number of year-round aquaculture jobs in the province to 2,100.
“Our vision for the future of Newfoundland and Labrador is a place where potential is realized, and opportunities abound,” said the province’s premier, Dwight Ball. “Through unprecedented partnerships with high potential industries like the aquaculture sector, our government is fostering the economic development, innovation, and job creation needed to support bright futures for people and families throughout our province.”
Actions to support growth within the aquaculture industry include:
- Responding to the human resource needs of the industry with tailored labour market supports, immigration attraction, and efforts to help make youth aware of opportunities in aquaculture;
- Responding to the capital and infrastructure needs of the industry by adjusting government funding programs and exploring partnership opportunities to develop facilities that strengthen the value chain for mussel and salmon producers;
- Responding to the public awareness and market access needs of the industry by developing a marketing strategy that promotes products and builds public trust;
- Responding to the needs of provincial entrepreneurs by promoting opportunities for aquaculture supply and service companies, which in turn creates new employment and maximizes industry competitiveness; and
- Responding to the public’s need for sustainable aquaculture development by reviewing all provincial policies related to aquaculture, including the provincial Code of Containment and other measures used to promote sustainability, which ensures the province remains a leader in best practices for years to come.
“Aquaculture generated a record $276 million for the provincial economy last year. While this is good news, the real excitement comes from knowing there is potential for even more economic success, not only from direct aquaculture activity, but also spin off employment in processing, transportation, service and supply,” said Mark Lane, executive director of the Newfoundland Aquaculture Industry Association.