AANS calling out environmental groups for misleading and inaccurate information

Nov 18, 2021

AANS calling out environmental groups for misleading and inaccurate information

HALIFAX, N.S.: After spending the past three days attending the Nova Scotia Aquaculture Review Board (ARB)
hearing for an application by Kelly Cove Salmon for a boundary amendment to their Rattling Beach salmon farm in
Digby, the Aquaculture Association of Nova Scotia (AANS) demands that national organizations like Ecojustice and
local organizations like the Ecology Action Centre, focus on current and future regulatory and enforcement efforts,
instead of dissecting aquaculture practices of the past.

“It is an unfortunate reality that salmon fish farming has been the subject of sustained misinformation campaigns,
and in particular one coming from Ecojustice,” said Tom Smith, Executive Director of the AANS. “What makes this
disturbing is that fish farming supports thousands of essential jobs in rural communities across Atlantic Canada —
jobs that have become even more precious during these difficult economic times. For more than 40 years, Nova
Scotians have supported marine fish farming and recognized that it can coexist with other fisheries on working

This week, Ecojustice has been spreading misinformation against the lease amendment application by Cooke
Aquaculture, stating that “fish farming is based in a faulty economic model that relies on the destruction of the

“Clearly this is not the case when Nova Scotia fish farming site leases have been repeatedly renewed in the
province after significant environmental and scientific review by government regulators, academics and others,”
said Smith.

The Coller Fairr Protein Index, which ranks global protein producers on environmental, social and governance
issues against the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, ranks salmon aquaculture at the top for
sustainability. Fish and shellfish farmed in the ocean allow species to be raised in their natural environment. They
are a top food choice for those who want a healthy option while reducing their environmental impact.

All forms of Nova Scotian aquaculture are based on science, follow best practices, are regulated by governments,
maintain a focus on responsible food production, create jobs in coastal communities and keep the carbon footprint
of food production low. The facts are clear: Nova Scotia marine fish farming is one of the most sustainable ways to
grow protein in the world.

It is worth noting that the vast majority of Nova Scotians are supportive of aquaculture, so there is an obvious
disconnect between groups like Ecojustice who are funded by supporters from around the world, not specifically
Nova Scotians who oppose aquaculture.

“Seafood farming in Nova Scotia needs to continue to expand if we are to realize our full potential in this province,
and organizations that seek to prevent this expansion based on outdated and misleading information need to
refocus their energies on the fact that more than 85% of the world’s marine stocks are either fully exploited or
overfished and practices such as fish farming are a sustainable solution to global food security,” concluded Smith.


About the Aquaculture Association of Nova Scotia (AANS)
The Aquaculture Association of Nova Scotia (AANS) was established in 1977 to act as the primary voice for
the aquaculture industry in the province. The main goals of the AANS are to support and unify the efforts of
industry and stakeholders to create a thriving, world-class, sustainable, and welcomed aquaculture industry
in Nova Scotia. Today the AANS represents more than 150 members who make up more than 95% of all
aquaculture operations in Nova Scotia in the finfish (salmon, trout and striped bass), shellfish (oysters,
mussels, clams, quahogs and scallops), Irish Moss, and an emerging sea plant sector. The industry directly
supports close to 900 jobs and contributes more than 90 million dollars to the provincial economy.

Our Mission
To support the production of quality farmed seafood in the cool, clear waters of Nova Scotia, creating wealth
based on a renewable resource.

For more information, visit seafarmers.ca.

Contact for Interviews
Stacey McCarthy

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