Salmon farmers update disease management plan
The British Columbia Salmon Farmers Association has unveiled new additions to a plan to help prevent and manage emerging viruses in fish farms, in the wake of a viral infection that broke out in the Canadian province last year.
The updates are in direct response to a serious outbreak of Infectious Haematopoietic Necrosis (IHN) in May and July of 2012. The virus, which is common in wild Pacific salmon, does not affect human health, but it can be harmful to Atlantic salmon, and three farm sites had to be depopulated and disinfected as a result of the outbreak.
Now, in a release, the association has announced it has updated the plan, first introduced two years ago, including new bio-security standards for transportation of farm materials on land during normal operations, enhanced internal communications plans during an incident and expanded provisions around sharing resources in the case of another outbreak.
“The co-operative plan our members proactively developed two years ago was very effective last year — and we’ve found ways to make it even stronger,” said Mary Ellen Walling, the association’s executive director.