Multi X points out that its accuser, the SMA, approved its production level at Cholga as recently as December 2023.

Chilean salmon farmer denies overproduction in national reserve

Site has operated within authorised limits, insists Multi X


Chile’s second largest salmon farmer, Multi X, has denied allegations that it breached production limits at its Cholga site, located within the Las Guaitecas National Reserve, in the Cisnes commune in Aysén region.

The country’s environment agency, the Superintendencia del Medio Ambiente (SMA), has filed a charge against Multi X for alleged overproduction in different farming cycles between 2014 and 2021. SMA categorises the charge as “very serious”.

Multi X told Fish Farming Expert’s Chilean sister site,, that “having reviewed all the permits and authorisations issued by various competent State bodies, we understand that it (Cholga) has operated since 2006 in compliance with the authorised capacities.”

This interpretation, according to the salmon farmer, has been supported by other State agencies, including the SMA itself, which it made clear in recent audits.

Moving the goalposts

“It is important to note that in December 2023, the SMA interpreted that the centre could produce up to 6,880 tonnes of salmon per cycle,” Multi X said.

This interpretation, according to the company, contrasts with the one currently used by the same Superintendency to formulate the accusation, “which is based on a press report published by NGO Terram in Ciper Chile in May of this year.” Ciper Chile is an online investigative journalism site.

“We remain open to dialogue with the relevant authorities to clarify any differences of interpretation and continue to operate in a transparent and responsible manner," the salmon farmer said.

Multi X produced 105,000 gutted weight tonnes of Atlantic salmon last year, up from 77,000 gwt in 2022, according to information in the Salmon Farming Industry Handbook published by the world's biggest salmon farmer, Mowi.