ASC says first salmon will soon be certificated –

ASC says first salmon will soon be certificated Published:  24 April, 2013

A growing number of independent and trained certifiers are ready to start their audits. By the end of the year salmon products with the ASC logo for responsibly farmed will appear on the market.

“After ASC certified tilapia and pangasius hit the market last year, this marks a further occasion to celebrate the speedy development of the ASC. I am hugely excited about the launch of the Salmon Standard.

“It will bring ASC’s certification programme to the next level. No less than 14 certifiers have been trained, the Salmon Audit Manual will soon be finalised and the first salmon audits are anticipated in a few months. Not only the major producing countries such as Norway and Chile are engaged, but also farms from the United Kingdom, Canada and New Zealand are eager to participate.” states Chris Ninnes, CEO of the ASC.

The Salmon farm standard is one of the most recognised and anticipated standard to be launched by the ASC to date. Several leading international companies have expressed their engagement to the salmon scheme.

Villa Organic, the Norwegian producer, will shortly announce their first ASC Salmon audit.

“Villa has long been the leading innovator in organic and responsible salmon farming. Up to now we have been farming our salmon according to private standards, which at times have been challenging to promote to consumers,”  said Ove Magnar Thu, Managing Director Villa Sales.

“We are therefore delighted to finally have a standard that covers all markets such as the ASC Salmon Standard. Consumers will now have one standard and logo they can relate to, which makes shopping for responsible fish easier. Villa is therefore proudly promoting ASC and is looking forward to soon bringing ASC certified salmon to the market.”

At the moment 14 trained certifiers are qualified to start farm audits globally. A second training is planned for late 2013.

The first ASC certified products for responsibly farmed salmon are expected in the market by the end of the year.

ASC’s credible and robust global farm certification programme ensures that audits are conducted in professional and sound manner.

ASC does not certify the farms itself, this is done by independent certifiers. Before certifiers can formally undertake audits their staff must have participated in the ASC Auditor Training for Salmon and must have passed the mandatory exam to demonstrate their full understanding of and competence in the application of the standard.

The ASC standard aims to address the key negative environmental and social impacts of salmon farming associated with sourcing of feed ingredients, disease transmission between farms and wild salmon populations, controlling escapes into the wild, use of therapeutics and anti-biotics, site impacts, the presence of GMO products in feed and labour issues on farms.

Chris Ninnes added: “Salmon farming has grown significantly in volume since 2000 and now over 1.5 million metric tonnes are farmed each year. Farmed salmon is a well-known and respected product by chefs and consumers.

“It has a great reputation, but minimising the associated environmental and social footprint will be crucial in maintaining this important market position into the future. Meeting the requirements enshrined in the ASC standard and communicating this into the market through the use of our on-product logo will demonstrate clearly to buyers that this salmon was produced in a responsible manner.”