Salmon farms on BC’s Discovery Islands ordered to cease operations by mid-2022

Wild sockeye salmon in British Columbia's Fraser River (Photo: Raincoast Conservation Foundation)

All 19 salmon farms located off British Columbia’s Discovery Islands have been ordered to cease their operations by June 30, 2022, Canadian fisheries minister Bernadette Jordan confirmed late last week.

The closure of the facilities is in line with the federal government’s policy of phasing out open-net salmon farms by 2025.

The province’s First Nations communities have blamed the same facilities for the sea lice and other pathogens responsible for the collapse of wild salmon stocks in nearby Fraser River over the years.

Although First Nations representatives were pleased with Ms Jordan’s announcement, the BC Salmon Farmers Association said in a statement that the minister’s decision came “at a bad time” with the province’s present food supply situation already being adversely affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The association added that it will discuss with other stakeholders before commenting further on the decision.

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