Thursday, 20 December 2018

BAD NEWS BITES - Global Problems in the Fish Farm/Seafood Industry, Updated Feb 11, 2019

I receive 30 global press fish farm/seafood industry newsletters every week. In these, I have found a startling amount of bad news, and decided to do a post on it. I had no idea there was as much bad news as there is.This is my eleventh post in three years. And the last post ended at 4,000 problems, as I put 500 in each post before starting a new one.

Some days I am stunned by the amount of bad news in the fish farm/seafood industry.  Find the fifth BAD NEWS BITES post here: And that reaches 2,000.

This is the link to the fourth post, Jan 14, 2017, it has 500 BAD NEWS BITES in it: it has links to the previous three posts since July 2015. You can find earlier ones at these links.

This is the link to the ninth post, March 29, 2018:

This is the link to the tenth post, Aug 9, 2018:

Here is a summary of the bad news stories:

"In one mouthful, here are the kind of stories I am finding: boom bust industry, billions made and lost, crisis in lice and disease, bankruptcy, workers fired, executives jumping company to company, dividing big bonuses, fraud, corruption, litigation, conflict of interest with government and scientists, using the ocean as a free open sewer – $10.4 Billion in BC alone, killing of whales, seals and sea lions – more than 12,000 in BC so far, slavery, unpaid labour, taxpayers paying millions for diseased, dead fish – $177 Million in Canada, dueling scientists, weakening of laws, unsustainable feed, illegal fishing, jail sentences, disasters in Norway, Scotland, Chile, Canada, bullying of scientists, governments and anyone critical of their business, cartels, collusion, price fixing, fishing down the food chain to Antarctic krill, carcinogens and persistent organic pollutants, fluoroquinolones, chicken feathers in feed, animal feces in feed, eutrophication in a time of global warming, Malachite Green fungFicide in USA seafood, fake industry awards, all the wild salmon in the Pacific ocean, more than a billion, put in peril... it goes on."

Update, Dec 11, 2017: I have found 500 BAD NEWS BITES in less than 3.5 months. That means well over 1000 in a year. That is how much bad news there is in fish farms/seafood industry. This post, the sixth, may be found here:

Update, Mar 29, 2018: You will find the previous posts on these dates: 23/1/2018, 11/12/17, 29/8/17. 5/5/17, 14/1/17, 1/7/16, 6/5/16,  1/7/15, and a total of nearly 3,500 BAD NEWS BITES.  

Update Aug 9, 2018: I have found 500 BAD NEWS BITES since Mar 29, 2018. The total now stands at 3,500 in three years. The Aug post has 500 BAD NEWS BITES, bringing the total to 4,000 problems in three years.

Here are the BAD NEWS BITES starting on Dec 20, 2018 - the tenth post:


188. Disease - ISA imported to Scotland, Aquagen, the company who imported it to Chile, causing a $2B loss:

187. Boom - China seafood output exceeds 50M tons:

186. Algal Bloom Earnings Squeeze - Grieg, BC lost a quarter mil salmon to an algal bloom in 2018:

185. Boom - Arnarlax, Iceland, 50% increase in production:

184. Yes?NO! fish farms in Terra del Fuego, Argentine govt says yes, TdF govt says NO: TdF cites environmental degradation of in-ocean fish farms.

183. Boom - Mowi (Marine Harvest) plans 430,000t harvest in 2019: And automation projects will mean fewer humans need apply. Also growth year over year: 2-6%, Norway; 13-19% UK; 15% Faroes; 1-6% Chile; 1-4% North America. Note that the lowest includes BC where they are taking farms out of the water in the Broughton.

182. Boom - Huge Processing Plant, $90M, Guolian, China:

181. Processors Fight - NL:

180. PRV Ruling - DFO has four months to bring in policy on PRV testing and begin:

179. Mislabeling - Canada, seafood/fish, a third is mislabeled:

178. Bribes - Malta, bureaucrat received bribes, now suspended:

177. Boom - Tassal in Australia, salmon and shrimp:

172. No More Humans in Processing - Marel, a good article on all the production line innovations it is doing, but they all mean fewer jobs in fish farming, in an industry that says it is about jobs:

171. 'Illegal' Fish Meal - Peru, anchovy, 150,000t:

170. Human Workers Need Not Apply - fully automated processing to come:

169. 'Extraordinary Mortalities' - Grieg Seafood, Scotland:

168. Sea Lice Infestation Report - Scotland:

167. Disease - yersiniosis, Norway Royal Salmon:

166. Fake News - 15 years after David Miller showed that high level collusion by fish farms, governments, fake websites and so on in Scotland and around the world lead to destroying science on the chemicals in farmed fish, even though the Hites report was true, the fish farm industry tries once again to claim the health risks to eating farmed fish are not true, even though they are:

165. Boom - mergers and acquisitions report:

164. Boom - ADM buys $1.8B Neovia:

163. Boom - Cooke continues company buy up, Seajoy:

162. Boom - takeovers continue in Iceland:

161. DFO and PRV - DFO says PRV not damaging to wild salmon, while WA state gets fish farms out of the water because of PRV. What is the matter with DFO?:

160. 13 Lawsuits - Green Foods, China:

159. Offshore Fish Farm - offshore pollution, China, 300,000 salmon:

158. Disease - PRV - DFO downplays PRV: Alex Morton says: "On February 4, 2019, I won a Federal Court ruling that DFO's refusal to screen farm salmon for the virus PRV is unlawful. Three days later, DFO made a reckless announcement that PRV is not harming Fraser sockeye salmon. Scientists involved are outraged and don't support this conclusion. Meanwhile the majority of sockeye in the upper Fraser, which are infected with this Norwegian virus, were officially at imminent risk of extinction. Someone needs to be tracking this virus as it is spreading through BC waters." The other thing is that PRV has been shown to cause HSMI in Norway, and jaundice/anemia in BC chinook. But DFO is using the sadly lacking excuse that PRV has not been shown to cause HSMI in BC, as in, it may be HSMI anywhere else in the world, but not here. Hold on, the Kibenge paper below, 155, says it is associated with HSMI in BC, and has links to papers. See the image half way down his article.

157. Illegal Fishing - China is worst:

156. Fake Science - new report: PRV causes no harm to wild salmon, DFO:

155. Diseases - Emerging Viruses in Aquaculture - Kibenge, 2018:

154. Wild Salmon Decline - BC:

153. PRV - fish need to be tested, BC:

152. PRV - fish need to be tested, BC:

151. Disease - PRV report to come, BC:

150. Monitoring Program Needed - Scotland fish farms:

149. Regulations Needed - Scotland fish farms:

148. Salmon Farming Debate - Scotland, parliament:

147. MSC Problems - "Its proposals aim to "improve confidence that the MSC fisheries standard is being applied consistently", it said. The consultations focus on three components of the MSC’s fisheries certification process: conditions, addressing disagreement and expedited audits."

146. Escape - Huon, Australia, kingfish:

145. Boom - China imports $1.36B crustaceans. All seafood imports up 44% to $11.9B:

144. PRV - DFO Minister loses case, must test farmed fish for PRV. Thank you Alex Morton and Ecojustice:

143. Arrests - China, fraud, smuggling, tax evasion:

142. Boom - ADM completes $1.8B deal for Neovia:

141. Violent Criminality Links - Chechen:

140. Largest Salmon Escapes in History:

139. Underwater Sewage Farm - Cuna Del Mar backed red snapper:

138. Escape - Ventisqueros, 28,660 salmon, Chile:

137. Iron Fist First Nations - Mirimachi:

136. Boom - the acquisitive Cooke grows even larger, picking up Seajoy:

135. Fish Feed Hits 40M MT - that's a lot of dead fish:

134. State Scrutiny of Fish Farms - WA, Cooke:

133. Debate on New Fish Farm Report - Scotland, govt:

132. Offshore Farms - USA, new legislation:

130. Executives Jumping Firm to Firm - SalMar:

129. Acquisitive Industry - Iceland,'tidal wave':

128. Mislabeling - don't get duped:

127. Mislabeling Farmed Salmon as Wild - up to 43%:

126. Mislabeling - USA:

125. Bust - pangasius competition brought down catfish farmer in USA:

124. Boom - Tassal plans huge increase in shrimp from $26.1M purchase: Govt, like in CDN, trumpets the industry: "The state's minister for agricultural industry development and fisheries, Mark Furner, said it was his "vision to see Queensland become a world leader in aquaculture, and projects like this one are an important step in making that happen"."

123. Escape - Ventisqueros, 26,830 fish, but Chilean government has not confirmed the company's number:

122. Heat Wave Could Kill - salmon, NZ:

121. Salmon Production Missed Mark - Norway, due to cold winter, lice :

120. Trial to Proceed - Pescanova:

119. Deputy Sues 'Codfather' - on-going debacle, USA east coast:

118. Chemicals Found Around Farms - Scotland: "The scientists analysed 302 chemical samples from 93 sample stations for emamectin benzoate [SLICE] and another anti-lice compound, Teflubenzuron, last used in 2013. The medicines were detected in 98% and 46% of samples respectively, with residues more widely spread in the environment around fish farms than had previously been found."

117. Arrest - Dalian firm boss, smuggling, China:

116. Acquisitive Industry - Agrosuper, Chile will take six months to gobble up its purchases, $850M, and become the second largest farmed salmon company in the world, after Mowi;

115. Price Fixing Price is $20M - StarKist will pay to Walmart:

114. Fish Counters to Close - UK, Tesco, 15,000 job losses:

113. 'Fake News' - US salmon market, consumers don't like farmed salmon, so to Norway this is 'fake news':

112. Millions of Fish Killed - Leroy, Norway, fire, 2.6M smolts, employee missing:

111. Ministers On Aquaculture Act - DFO, NB give citizens the opposite of what they want, which is putting fish farms on land:

110. Antibiotics in Aquaculture - UK trying to eliminate antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and eliminate use of antibiotics:

109. Heatwave Could Kill Salmon - NZ fish farms:

108. Offshore Farm - Estonian firm Avamere Kalakasvatus wants to build another off-shore farm, rainbow trout:

107. Escape - SalMar, offshore Ocean Farm 1. This is a serious issue as offshore farms cause megapollution and have mega-numbers of salmon compared with an in-ocean, on-shore farm:

106. 10 Fish Farms to Come out of Water - Mowi (MH), Broughton, BC:

105. Indigenous Sue Canada Over In-ocean Fish Farms - APTN:

104. Put Polluters in Jail - BC citizens say in poll:

103. Escapes? - net tear for Arnarlax, Iceland, could mean fish escaped:

102. More Young's Debacle - UK, Bird's Eye shares drop:

101. 50 Workers to Lose Jobs - Young's, UK, Scotland, due to automation of processing, Waitrose plant:

100. Mass Vaccinations - tilapia, lake, Ghana:

99. Jail Time for Environmental Violations - Chile:

98. Bankruptcy - Seaman Seafood, Norway, processing regs a problem;

97. Offshore Farm - offshore is a pollution problem, in China, Deep Blue No. 1, the farm is 130 miles offshore:

96. Humans Not Needed - Loch Duart, Scotland, automated feed barge. Where are those jobs that fish farms are always trumpeting about? See: It says the barge won't need labour: ""which provide reliable, efficient and less labor-intensive means of delivering sustainably-sourced feed" to the farm’s salmon."

95. Non Transparent - Mowi, Chile, doesn't want to have to disclose antibiotics, has appealed to the highest court:

94. Workers Laid Off - Young's, UK plant closed. 450 full time employees plus 350 seasonal employees, Pinney's plant, so 800 workers laid off:

93. 10 Farms to Close - Mowi (MH) says it will close 10 farms in the Broughton Archipelago, BC: On the other hand, it is looking to start farms in other areas.

92. Boom - Agrosuper to become the second biggest fish farm company in the world, behind Mowi (Marine Harvest) after gobbling up Friosur, AquaChile and Salmones Magallanes:

91. Back Offshore - Norway, Alsted backs the pollution of offshore, and onshore:

90. Boom - Russia, Gidrostroy, pollock processor:

89. Huge Ocean Warming - Stab, bad news: This is the link to the study: Here is the date: Science  11 Jan 2019: Vol. 363, Issue 6423, pp. 128-129 DOI: 10.1126/science.aav761.

88. Boom - global salmon demand will outstrip supply in 2019:

87. Fish Free Oil - contest:

86. Ocean Acidification Threat - UK:

85. Salmon In Trouble from New Protein Sources - Rabobank

84. Feed Barge Sinks - Scotland, 170mt of feed and 1000l of diesel:

83. Fish Farm Rejected - Chile, Inversione Pelicano, 1560mt:

82. No Farm Zone - 16 km between farms for lice and other reasons, modelling, Norway. This post is on a site dedicated to live problems:

81. Disease - science, ISA, Sire Vike, a whole list of papers:

80. Court Case - BC, Dzawada’enuzw take feds to court, The Narwhal:

79. Disease - listeria, NZ King Salmon:

78. Disease - Norway, pancreatic disease, Mowi/Marine Harvest:

77. MSC Inquiry - UK, independent, the standard:

76. Bust - South Korean pollock, big decline, bans fishery:

75. Boom - US salmon imports hit $4B in 2018:

74. Offshore Allows Farmers to Avoid Environmental Problems - Norway, report on challenges:

73. Brexit No Deal Bad for Fish Farmers - Norwegian, Asian firms:

72. First Nations Sue Feds - over fish farms, Canada, BC, Broughton, Kingcome:

71. Brexit Could Hit Fish Farms - Scotland:

70. Mega Pollution - SalMar's, Ocean Farm 1, or, the newer Smart Fish Farm to come, puts out the pollution of six fish farms, as it contains 3M salmon. The world does not need ocean pollution on a grand scale. We're not keeping up with climate change, and should destroy the ocean:

69. 4 Year Prison Term - falsely labeling crab, $4.3M, Virginia:

68. Polluting Fish Farms Reined In - China: "Data collated by Aquaculture Wealth: Seafood, an industry publication, shows China's anti-pollution drive has been vast in scale; 300,000 cages and 2.4 million mu of farms with net pens -- equivalent to 160,000 hectares -- have been removed. Seemingly no region has been spared."

67. Oligopolies - the big mergers and acquisitions of 2019, Cooke, Iberconsa, and others:

66. Salmon Deaths - 20% NZ King salmon, wants to farm in the open ocean:

65. Krill Carnage - Antarctica, Rimfrost:

64. Boom - record sales, shrimp, Ecuador to China:

63. Disease - norovirus, Ireland:

62. Shrimp Exports Struggle - India:

61. Disease - Scotland, huge research project:

60. Mergers and Acquisitions, 2019 - big ones to watch for, oligopolies:

59. DFO Refuses Disease Testing - BC, won't allow Broughton Archipelago First Nations to use DFO labs for tests for, among others, PRV:

58. First Nation Sues Feds - BC, Dzawada'enuxw, to get fish farm licences out of Kingcome Inlet,

57. Prison Term Appealed - tax fraud, Ventola, National Fish, pays $1.07M restitution, $75,000 fine:

56. Disease - gill disease prompts 3.5M pounds program, Scotland:

55. Huge Sea Lice Problem - prompts record grants to address problem in Norway:

54. Commercial Fishers Against Offshore Fish Farms - USA, 3 to 200 miles offshore:

53. Court Case - Indigenous, Kingcome Inlet take DFO to court over fish farms:

52. Boom - Norway ships a record $11.5B in seafood n 2018:

51. Fishers Against Fish Farms - USA:

50. Disease - listeria, Marine Harvest, now Mowi, salmon from Scotland this time;

49. Disease - listeria, Norwegian salmon to Spain:

48. Boom - $172M pangasius project in Vietnam, Navico:

47. 10- to 20-% Salmon Die - from smolt to adult, in-ocean:

46. Boom - Chile exceeds $5B salmon exports for first time:

45. Omega-3s, No Effect? - Norway:

44. Disease - SRS - Chile, Cermaq spends big bucks for vaccine. Fish farmers spend more than $700M annually for florifenicol and oxytetracycline, the latter a human antibiotic and one we don't want bacteria to form a resistance to:

43. Fishermen Against Fish Farms - USA:

42. 127 Mergers and Acquisitions - 2018

41. Escapes - Big Fine: $1.2M, Chile Ventisqueros (760,000 Euros):

40. Pen Concepts Rejected - Royal Norway Salmon:

39. Boom - Chile, salmon to increase 20% in 2019:

38. Stringent Water Regulations - WA, until Cooke closes in 2022:

37. Plea for On-land - NL, faced with Placentia Bay mega-sewage fish farm. Notes problems in Scotland, WA, and moving to land in BC:

36. Forage Fish Decimation - Peru, anchovetta, 540,000t:

35. Oligopoly - Chile, government policy is making for consolidation, Agrosuper, for instance:

34. Boom - processing up 50% in Russian, Nurebo:

33. Boom - Multiexport, Blumar to build 50,000mt processing plant, Chile:

32. Fake Awards - one of the problems with fish farms is that they award themselves awards that they set up and control. Fake awards: For example: we became the first salmon producer in the UK to be awarded 2-star Best Aquaculture Practice (BAP) certification for all our marine and processing sites, demonstrating our commitment to environmental stewardship. The world’s most comprehensive third-party aquaculture certification programme, BAP is administered by the Global Aquaculture Alliance (GAA) and is compliant with the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI), Global Social Compliance Programme (GSCP) and Global Sustainable Seafood Initiative (GSSI)."

The BAPs were set up by the industry. The GAA, is an industry set up group, administers the fake BAPs:  Look at all the members, all seafood  businesses. The GFSI came about after large, negative food problems, note that the BAPS are compliant: The GSCP is a UN related body. Note that the BAPs are 'compliant' with all the following bodies.

31. Fish Farms Regroup - Northwest Aquaculture Association to include Or, Montana, Idaho, WA, BC and thinks it can grow in WA, even though it has been phased out by 2025. Typical:

30. Boom - 20% more salmon in 2018, Chile:

29. Undercooked Shrimp - recalled, Kroger:

28. Costs Rise - in-ocean 5% in Norway, cutting into profits, making on-land cheaper:

27. Cold Kills Pangasius, Tilapia - China:

26. Sashimi Royal wins ASC - Danish yellowtail kingfish, on land:

25. Escape - 25,000 fish, Marine Harvest, Scotland:

24. Disease - PD, a different variant, Norway, Marine Harvest:

23. Escape - Chile, Ventisqueros, 129,000 fish:

22. Lawsuit - Chilean fishermen sue Marine Harvest over its 690,000 fish escape:

21. Concepts Rejected - Norway Royal Salmon and other firms, plans not innovative;

20. Boom - India state, Gujarat, plans massive shrimp increase:

19. Illegal Fishing - lobster, Massachusetts:

18. Mergers and Acquisitions - the big get bigger, anti-competitive, in fish farms/seafood in 2018: "To say there were a lot of mergers and acquisitions in 2018 would be an understatement. Undercurrent identified 127 deals, up from 117 in 2017 and 102 in 2016. The fourth quarter of 2018 alone saw 42 deals, the most since we started tracking in January 2015. The joint second-highest quarter for deals was Q3 of last year when we recorded 34, the same as in Q4 of 2017."

17. Escape - SalMar, offshore Salmon Farm 1:

16. Disease - ISA, Cermaq, Chile, results in rush harvest:

15. Fish Farm Spin - Feed, they don't think algae or maggot feed should be seen as more sustainable than the forage fish they have trashed for decades:

14. Boom - huge pelagic catches for fishmeal, Norway;

13. Boom - PE firm makes $3B purchase of Quirch, USA:

12. Boom - Ecuador ships 500,000t of shrimp: Tenfold increase to China, total sales exceed $500 million.

11. Environmental Damage - Atlantic Canada:,

10. *Cancer, Sterility from Eating Farmed Salmon - Norway: Google translate, from Alex Morton:

9. Boom - Iberconsa buys Valestro vessels, eyes others:

8.Blood Water, PRV Flowing - BC, Tofino, fish processing effluent:

7. DFO Against Wild Salmon - BC, DFO is busy trying to find that fish farms don't harm wild salmon, an outcome of the Cohen Commission, saying they need to remove fish farms by 2020 if they can't prove minimal damage. Living Oceans nails this one: "DFO’s aquaculture scientists have been busy trying to establish that the farms cause “no more than minimal harm”; while at the same time, the Department is a partner in the Strategic Salmon Health initiative led by Dr. Kristi Miller Saunders. Dr. Miller’s team is finding the reverse: viruses from salmon farms do infect Pacific salmon and the result can be deadly. The virus PRV, introduced from Norway, causes the red blood cells of Chinook salmon to rupture." See:

6. Farms to Close in BC - Marine Harvest, Cermaq:

5. Chemicals Harmful to Crustaceans - SLICE, peroxide, Teflubenzuron, Ireland study:

4. Excuses for PRV - Disease, Benchmark the supplier to Cooke, in WA, that has to destroy 800,000 fry it got as eggs offers up an endless list of excuses and out right falsehoods, rather than accept that they supplied PRV eggs:

3. Escape! Escape! - Marine Harvest, Scotland, 24,572 fish, in a storm:

2. Diseases - in farmed fish, eggs, fry:

1. Bankruptcy? - China Fishery Group, Peruvian anchovy operations, part of Pac Andes: