Maine farmed salmon earns unique Seafood Watch rating

Published on
February 10, 2016

The Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch program has given Maine farmed salmon a “good alternative” rating, the first such rating for any North American farmed salmon.

Seafood Watch investigated the feed type, stock origin, aquaculture practices and state and federal regulations to determine one of three ratings for each of the world’s fisheries – “best choice,” “good alternative” or “avoid.”

Much of Maine’s farmed salmon is produced at facilities owned or operated by Canadian-based Cooke Aquaculture Co.according to the Ellsworth American. That includes 22 pen sites, most in Cobscook Bay in far eastern Maine, and three hatcheries and a processing plant in Machiasport, the paper reported.

All Maine salmon farming companies participate in the Global Aquaculture Alliance Best Aquaculture Practices program, and the Maine Aquaculture Association’s Code of Practice, Bay Management and Biosecurity programs, according to a press release from the Maine Aquaculture Association.

“We have been closely watching the steady increase of demand for farmed Atlantic salmon and the related Maine industry as it continues to grow, improve and innovate,” said Sebastian Belle, executive director of the Maine Aquaculture Association. “The Seafood Watch rating is a tangible distinction and is a direct result of the best practices and regulations we have put in place to continue to support this growing industry.”

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