THE first organic salmon from Mowi Scotland has just entered the UK market following certification by the Soil Association, giving the company a guarantee of year-round supply. The fish, which is also certified to EU organic standards and approved by Agriculture Biologique in France, will be sold under newly created brand, the Scottish Organic Salmon Company.
Mowi said this new volume of organic salmon, combined with the organic salmon that has been produced by Mowi Ireland over the past 20 years, means that the company is now confident it can supply organic salmon 365 days a year. It is maximising its in-house expertise both in terms of experience in farming organic as well as selling the final product. All organic salmon from Scotland will be sold by the Mowi Organic team based in Ireland.
To achieve organic certification with the Soil Association, every step of the process of farming salmon must conform to robust criteria that is inspected annually, including feed milling, farming and processing.
The organic feed is produced at Mowi’s feed mill at Kyleakin on the Isle of Skye, and is regulated by EU legislation and meets the criteria for both the Soil Association and Naturland in Germany.
At the farm, the Soil Association mandates that fish stocking density must be less than 10 kilos of fish per cubic metre – about 30% less than conventional farms. Anti-foulants cannot be used on nets and the use of medicines and pesticides is also restricted. Seabed sampling and analysis is carried out every year. Organic salmon must be processed within strict timeframes and must be the first product on the day’s schedule.
While the organic salmon market is still relatively small, it is hoped that by increasing the supply of organic salmon, Mowi will be able to accelerate the market.
Mowi Ireland sales and processing director Pat Connors said:
‘From our 20 years of experience of producing and selling organic salmon, we know that retailers are reluctant to push it to the same extent as conventional salmon because there just isn’t the same guaranteed continuity of supply. Now with the additional Scottish organic volumes, we are confident that we can have continuity of supply 52 weeks of the year.’