About 70% of the salmon eaten around the world is farmed. On such a scale, poor farming practices have the potential to cause negative environmental impacts. Managing interactions with endangered and threatened species, such as seals, birds, and sharks that may be attracted to the aquaculture farms is important so as to minimise impacts on these species.
By directly working with industry, scientists, environmental groups and government, WWF-Australia is providing a framework for responsible salmon production as the aquaculture industry continues to grow.
This includes working with seafood producers to help them achieve Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) certification. This is the highest independent standard for sustainably farmed seafood in the world and includes strict requirements for minimising escapes, chemical use, predator control and effluent release. ASC certification also prescribes that food ingredients come from sustainable sources, and outlines habitat protection.
Consumers opting for ASC-certified products can be assured that they’re purchasing seafood from farms that manage their impacts on surrounding environments and communities. Under the guidance of WWF, Tassal became the first salmon company in Australia to achieve ASC certification for a farm site and the first company globally to achieve this standard across its operations in 2014.
Some 61% of the Australian salmon market is now ASC-certified.
Our commitment to sustainable aquaculture and marine conservation in Tasmania
WWF-Australia is expanding its approach to sustainable aquaculture and marine conservation in Tasmania by deepening its engagement with aquaculture companies, government, scientists and stakeholders.
Over the next two years, WWF plans to work with industry, leading scientists, environmental groups and government to secure:
- A government commitment to enhanced marine spatial planning and protection that better accounts for all marine and coastal values and users;
- 100% certification of Tasmanian salmon production against the highest global standard for sustainable fish farming (the Aquaculture Stewardship Council or ASC), while also strengthening the standard to reflect Tasmanian conditions;
- More effective and transparent regulation of aquaculture, including more public disclosure of the environmental impacts of aquaculture; together with science-based limits on salmon farming to protect sensitive ecosystems and vulnerable species, notably in Macquarie Harbour.
WWF-Australia is excited about our whole of industry approach and looks forward to collaborative successes for Tasmania’s precious marine environment and sustainable industries.