Science &

Atlantic salmon farming is based on science and research and the sector continues to evolve, like it has from its beginnings over 40 years ago. Science, research, and technology are at the core of the sector – from farming practices to feed and feeding systems, to waste management, fish health, ocean health and food safety. The people who work in the salmon farming industry are world-class experts in their fields – from highly-skilled engineers, veterinarians and researchers to marine biologists, scientists and hatchery managers.

Atlantic salmon farmers continue to invest millions of dollars into the research and development of alternative ‘green’ sea lice technologies that include warm water baths, ‘cleaner’ fish and broodstock enhancements.

Quantifying salmon feed waste, using salmon waste as fertilizer or fuel, feed trials to test alternate feed ingredients and sediment profile imagery are just a few of the many research projects occurring. Artificial intelligence is also being harnessed to make salmon farming more energy efficient and environmentally friendly. AI allows farmers to view and monitor fish health and feeding from remote locations.

The ACFFA plays a lead role on behalf of industry in advocating for scientific research and technological development that is industry-driven and ensures the ongoing sustainability of the sector. The ACFFA is proactive in maintaining relationships with R&D agencies and collaborators at the regional, national and international level by participating in research workshops and in the development of collaborative research programs.

With a goal to continue to innovate and improve farming technology, our salmon farming companies work with the best researchers and scientists.

These researchers and scientists come from a range of positions, including federal and provincial governments, universities, and from institutions such as the Atlantic Veterinary College, the Huntsman Marine Science Center, the University of New Brunswick, the St. Andrews Biological Station, the National Research Council, Dalhousie University, Memorial University, Sterling University (Scotland), University of Maine, University of Guelph, and University of Toronto.

Farmed salmon is the most efficient form of protein production. This is no accident. In my company alone we have a number of dedicated research centers, with a global network of scientists comprising around 30 nationalities. We collaborate with over 60 universities and research institutions, and regularly contribute articles to peer-reviewed scientific journals. This is just my company! Over the years we have seen incredible leaps in knowledge and technology with an underlying focus on environmental stewardship and sustainability. There is always more to learn, and science will continue to propel aquaculture into the future as a solution to provide healthy food and maintain a healthy environment for generations to come.
Dr. Steve Backman
Produce Manager (Skretting)
Diploma in Agriculture, Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, Diploma in Anatomical Pathology
33 years working in aquaculture
Atlantic Canadian salmon farmers have adopted the most rigid standards for marine ocean farming and are certified by credible environmental groups based on sound science principles. They have and will continue to innovate to reduce and mitigate any potential impacts from the ocean farming of Atlantic salmon. They have adopted the most rigid ocean containment systems to prevent escapes, developed ways to reduce marine resources in feeds (oil and meal) and adapted eco-friendly parasite control (cleaner fish, mechanical). They base their farming on the most current science and technology available.”
Cyr Couturier
Aquaculture Scientist, Chair MSc Sustainable Aquaculture Program School of Fisheries, Marine Institute of Memorial University
Over the past two decades, we have seen major improvements in habitat monitoring results which we attribute to the commitment of Atlantic Canadian salmon farmers to advance scientific research in feed management, engineering, and production. Our work in the field and in the lab is scrutinized very heavily by the regulatory authorities, particularly under the annual Environmental Monitoring Programs in each province. When aquaculture operations are sited and managed properly, there is every reason to expect long-term environmental sustainability.”
Bob Sweeney
President & Sr. Project Manager at SIMCorp
38 years working in aquaculture
Aquaculture is based on, and driven by, strong, innovative science. There are thousands of scientific articles published every year on aquaculture science, which are making discoveries that improve the efficiency and sustainability of aquaculture. It’s a dynamic industry that relies on these scientific discoveries to make strides forward in producing healthy food and minimizing environmental impacts.”
Dr. Stefanie Colombo
Ph.D. (Biology), M.Sc. (Biology), B.Sc. (Marine & Freshwater Biology)
Assistant Professor and Canada Research Chair (Tier II) in Aquaculture Nutrition
10 years of university education, 13 years of working and training in aquaculture
News & Releases
As the only association focused solely on salmonid farming in Atlantic Canada, the ACFFA can help you stay current on industry happenings, expand your network as well as promote and protect your interests.
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