The company attributed the incident, which occurred just before Christmas, to human error during a routine bathing operation, rather than to environmental factors.
There were 800,000 fish at the site, so the loss represents about three per cent of Tassal’s stock at Okehampton Bay.
Tassal said that the farm showed no problems at all, and that Okehamptom Bay is still an appropriate place as regards water temperature and environmental conditions. They also pointed out that fish survival rate is around 83 per cent even after this incident.
According to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC), the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) of Tasmania said that the fish death was reported by Tassal to its marine farm planning division.
Local residents and environmental organisation Environment Tasmania have reiterated their concern about the operations of the Okehampton Bay farm, because they argue that the site is not suitable.
Meanwhile, Tassal is to offer tours of its new fish farm sites, hosted by the company chief executive Mark Ryan, according to the ABC.
Ryan will personally host tours of Tassal’s planned fish farm sites in Storm Bay, south of the Tasmanian capital, Hobart, commencing “from mid-February”, according to the ABC.
The two-and-a-half-hour trips will “include an overview of our operations and vision”, a visit to existing salmon farms and travel to Storm Bay to “view the location” of the proposed site, the company said, adding “we are very keen to have a conversation and welcome all questions along the journey”.
Tassal told the ABC that the tours were “more than six years in the planning”.
Published: 09/01/2018 at 10:01 am