Chilean President Gabriel Boric has consistently criticized the open-pen salmon farming sector before and since he was elected this past March, repeatedly calling it thoughtless in its regard for the environment. Chile's Fisheries and Aquaculture undersecretary is moving forward with Boric's commitment to advance the exit of salmon companies from protected areas under "a fair transition process". Full article below.
AquaChile agrees to end salmon farming in Chile's national parks The decision came after three months of talks with the government.
By John Evans | Intrafish
AquaChile, Chile's largest salmon farming company, has agreed to end production in the country's national parks, the government announced Wednesday.
Chile Fisheries and Aquaculture undersecretary Julio Salas said AquaChile's decision came after three months of talks, which were held with two of the three salmon companies with production sites in national parks. A spokesperson with AquaChile confirmed the development to IntraFish.
Salas highlighted the decision as part of a commitment from new President Gabriel Boric to advance the exit of salmon companies from protected areas under "a fair transition process."
Boric, who took power in March under a system that allows leaders only one consecutive term in office, has consistently criticized the salmon farming sector before and since he was elected, repeatedly calling it thoughtless in its regard for the environment.
Last month the Chile Salmon Council trade body, representing more than half of the salmon production in the South American nation, pushed back against claims made in a Greenpeace documentary criticizing the salmon industry's methods and impacts on the environment.
Although such claims are not new, they come at a time when the industry is under increasing scrutiny from Boric.
Among other allegations, the documentary entitled "Por Aqui No" (loosely translated as "Not Here") claims the salmon industry shamelessly destroys natural resources and marine life before moving on to new production areas.It also criticized laws allowing salmon production in protected national reserves such as the Kawesqar National Park, where production is a bone of contention.
The announcement comes as Chile's government plans to present a draft of a new aquaculture law to lawmakers during the fourth quarter of 2023.
Salas plans to canvass opinions along the aquaculture industry's value chain as part of the process.
New legislation governing the wild-catch and aquaculture sectors was originally expected to be put before lawmakers under the same bill but now these will be separated out because as distinct industries they present different issues.
The government will launch a public consultation on the sustainable development of the aquaculture industry, offering interested parties the opportunity to make their views clear in the first quarter of next year.
"We believe that dialogue, transparency and respect for the environment should serve as the basis for new legislation in the field of aquaculture, to build a good general aquaculture law," Salas said.
AquaChile is owned by Chilean ag conglomerate AgroSuper. The company posted revenues of $1.2 billion (€1.1 billion) in 2021.
Click on our Facebook post below for the article and comments.