Canada invests in aquaculture

The Canadian government has announced significant funding to support innovation and sustainability in the aquaculture industry in British Columbia.

"Our government is committed to enhancing the global competitiveness, productivity and environmental performance of Canada's aquaculture industry," said Parliamentary Secretary Randy Kamp. "We are pleased to help keep the BC economy strong by supporting these promising new commercial innovations. Canada has the potential to become a world leader in aquaculture with our extensive coastlines, an international reputation for safe, high-quality fish and seafood products, a skilled workforce and strong management expertise."

The federal funding provided through the Aquaculture Innovation and Market Access Program (AIMAP) is supporting three finfish and five shellfish aquaculture projects in BC.

The companies receiving project funding include: Target Marine Hatcheries (Sechelt), Sablefish Canada (Salt Spring Island), West Coast Fish Culture (Lois Lake), Island Sea Farms (Salt Spring Island), Little Wing Oysters (Powell River), Island Scallops (Qualicum Beach), as well as the Coastal Shellfish Corporation, which is leading projects on behalf of the Heiltsuk First Nation and the Metlakatla First Nation.

Nationally, aquaculture production has increased four-fold in the past 20 years. Approximately 70% of all Canadian aquaculture products are sold to foreign markets, and the world now depends on aquaculture as an essential source of nutrition - half of all fish and seafood is now farmed.

"As Canada's aquaculture industry continues to grow, it brings economic and social benefits to our country," said Mr Kamp. "Our government is ensuring that this industry has the support it needs to expand in an environmentally responsible and sustainable way."

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