Norway names ‘red light’ salmon zones

More than 20 salmon farmers in south west Norway were ordered today to cut production by up to 6% following the latest update to the country’s controversial traffic light system.

The red areas for this year are production area 3 (Karmøy to Sotra), and production area 4 (Nordhordland to Stad).

Production area 4 has also been ordered to reduce production capacity as well as output.

Fisheries and Marine Affairs Minister Bjørnar Skjæran said western Norway faced the most serious impact from salmon lice.

He added: “Here the industry must take action to ensure that impact is not only reduced by downsizing, but also through operational improvements.”

Up to 25 companies in these areas are contesting the government scheme but have already lost two key district and appeal court hearings. The issue will now go before Norway’s Supreme Court for a final ruling.

However, the Ministry of Trade and Industry has granted green light status to eight of Norway’s 13 production areas allowing them to increase production by up to 6%.

These areas cover most of central and northern Norway, almost up to the Swedish border.

Minister Skjæran maintained “We are now ensuring further growth in the areas where the impact of salmon lice on wild salmon is acceptable.

“It will facilitate further growth to create more jobs, more Norwegian food production, greater value creation and increased export revenues for Norway.

“At the same time, we are seriously taking the wild (salmon) aspect into account by reducing production capacity where the impact is considered unacceptable.”

Three areas, mainly in south and central Norway, have been given yellow lights indicating that production of salmon and trout can continue at current levels.

 

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