RSPCA approves first Australian salmon farm
Tasmania, Aus-headquartered Huon Aquaculture has become the first seafood producer in Australia to join the RSPCA’s Approved Farming Scheme after satisfying the animal welfare standards set by the program.
“Fish welfare has always been essential to every aspect of what we do. That’s why, after a lot of extremely hard work by all of our people and as Australia’s first RSPCA Approved salmon farmer, we are proud to be leading the way in farming salmon safely, sustainably and with a strong focus on welfare,” said Frances Bender, executive director at Huon.
“We’ve never wanted to be the biggest salmon farmers; we want to be the best. Being able to supply Australia’s only range of ‘RSPCA Approved Salmon’ means that consumers that care and want the best for themselves and their families can now do that with confidence by choosing Huon.
“Achieving this accreditation hasn’t happened overnight – we have worked closely with the RSPCA Approved Farming Scheme over many years to meet [its] high standards and it is something that everyone working for Huon has been instrumental in achieving,” she said.
RSPCA Australia CEO Heather Neil praised the hard work and dedication from Huon to meet the standard.
“With a growing number of Australians including fish in their diets, it’s important that caring consumers have the opportunity to choose a product that has been raised to a high standard of animal welfare – Huon [has] recognized this and [is] leading the way in offering Australians a humanely farmed salmon product,” she said.
All of the fish grown in Huon’s Tasmania’s south sites are now RSPCA-approved, but its salmon grown in Macquarie Harbour, Tasmania, are not currently part of the scheme.
“It is no secret that we have concerns over the health of Macquarie Harbour, as does the RSPCA. When environmental conditions improve, the RSPCA will look at independent science and review this decision,” said Bender. “Our farming ethos has stood us in good stead for the last 32 years, and will for many more years to come."
Established in 1986, Huon produces approximately 24,000 metric tons of salmon annually.