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Monday, July 21, 2014

21/07/2014: Chilean salmon farming industry used more than 450,000kgs of antibiotics in 2013

A report by the Chilean National Fishery and Aquaculture Service (Sernapesca) revealed that salmon farming companies in Chile used 450,700 kilos of antibiotics in 2013, the world’s highest amount for the industry.  

The marine conservation organisation, Oceana, called the Government to implement concrete strong reduction targets and deadlines for the use of these chemicals. 

“It isn't normal for an industry to require 450 tonnes of antibiotics to operate. 

"If companies are not able to work in a clean way, then their activity cannot be tolerated, particularly in an ecosystem like Patagonia which is the base for other sustainable economic activities”, said Alex Muñoz, Executive Director at Oceana.

The information, published in the “Report on the use of Antimicrobials in National Salmon Farming 2013”, compares negatively with the Norwegian industry, where only 972 kilos of antibiotics were used to grow even larger amounts of salmon that same year.

On July 1, 2014 Oceana filed a report to the Transparency Council after 50 salmon companies refused to reveal the amount and type of antibiotics they used. The companies claimed that “such disclosure would threaten their business competitiveness”.

“The fact that companies prevent the authorities from revealing information that should be public with the sole purpose of protecting their commercial interests speaks to their profit-seeking behavior at the expense of communities and environmental degradation. Strong mandatory measures with specific deadlines are required to prevent such irresponsible behavior from salmon farming companies”, added Alex Muñoz.

The main impact of excessive use of antibiotics is bacterial resistance. 

This means that the antibiotics used lose their effectiveness, not only in salmons but also in humans, resulting in a severe public health issue. While salmons can lack antimicrobial traces because they are sold as the end-product, studies reveal that bacteria in fish treated with antibiotics can already be resistant and spread such resistance to consumers and the environment.


The Aquaculturists
This blog is maintained by The Aquaculturists staff and is supported by the magazine International Aquafeed which is published by Perendale Publishers Ltd.

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