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Mowi slaughters 200,000 fish after Canada ISAv tests

Healthy salmon at a Mowi farm in Canada. Fish in one of three cages at a farm run by Mowi subsidiary NHSF in Newfoundland have to be slaughtered after ISAv was confirmed in two specimens from the cage. Photo: Patrick Armstrong / Mowi.
Healthy salmon at a Mowi farm in Canada. Fish in one of three cages at a farm run by Mowi subsidiary NHSF in Newfoundland have to be slaughtered after ISAv was confirmed in two specimens from the cage. Photo: Patrick Armstrong / Mowi.

Mowi-subsidiary Northern Harvest Sea Farms (NHSF) is slaughtering 200,000 salmon at its Cinq Island Cove site off the south coast of Newfoundland after the suspected presence of infectious salmon anaemia virus (ISAv) was confirmed.

In a statement issued on the Newfoundland Aquaculture Industry Association website, NHSF said the action was being taken after two fish were identified as positive through the Newfoundland and Labrador government’s aquatic animal health surveillance programme.

The cage is one of three on the site, each with around 200,000 Atlantic salmon.

“Fish from all other cages at the site have tested negative. NHSF is carrying out the fish removal using approved biosecure Standard Operating Procedures, and all responsible actions in its response are under the oversight of the Newfoundland and Labrador Department of Fisheries, Forestry and Agriculture, and follows government approved policies,” stated NHSF.

Site in quarantine

A suspect positive discovery of ISAv was disclosed within 24 hours of detection on August 15, in line with the NL government’s policy on openness, and the Cinq Island Cove site was quarantined by NL Department of Fisheries and Land Resources (FLR).

Confirmation of ISAv was also disclosed within 24 hours.

“We remind that ISAv is not a human health issue or a food safety issue,” stated NHSF.

“We thank our staff for their hard work and professionalism as they respond to this issue.”