Farmed freshwater trout. (Photo Credit: ASC)
Freshwater trout farming standards now up to ASC
Friday, February 22, 2013, 21:10 (GMT + 9)
The Freshwater Trout Aquaculture Dialogue has handed over the global freshwater trout standards to the Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC). This is the sixth standard ASC has received and joins those for tilapia, pangasius, bivalves (mussels, oysters, clams, scallops), abalone and salmon.
Chris Ninnes, ASC’s CEO, is delighted that yet another important milestone has been reached: “We are now eager to move forward with the pilot testing shortly and to launching ASC certified farmed responsibly trout into the market in 2013.”
The ASC freshwater trout standard is keenly anticipated by the market. A clear indicator of the enthusiastic response it has received is reflected in the warm welcome by Gottfried-Friedrichs, Germany’s leading quality seafood brand.
“Friedrichs is looking forward to the ASC-certification of trout farms later this year,” said marketing manager Kathrin Runge.“We are preparing for the certification with our suppliers and internally and want to launch ASC-certified trout in the European market as soon as possible.”
The confidence in the ASC and the trout standard is similarly strong from the farming sector.
Brian Thomsen, Director of The Danish Aquaculture Organisation, has been quick to express his commitment: “We believe there is a strong and growing demand for responsibly farmed fish and we remain committed to spearhead this development to the benefit of consumers and society.”
Worldwide production of freshwater trout is estimated at 750,000-800,000 tonnes and is steadily growing. A variety of production systems are used ranging from cages in lakes, to pond culture and flow-through and recirculation systems.
Farming of trout can have negative impacts on the environment and society and the ASC standards addresses issues such as; disease prevention, minimizing the outflow of nutrients from the farm, responsible use of water and preventing escapes.
Next steps for the trout and other programmes
Preparation for ASC’s pilot testing of the draft Trout Audit Manual is underway and will start over the coming weeks in collaboration with producers globally. The results from the pilots will be fed into the final Trout Audit Manual.
ASC-certified trout is expected to be available in the market before the end of 2013.
ASC certified salmon products are expected in 2013 and these products will be followed by market launches for certified clams, mussels, scallops, oysters and abalone. The ASC anticipates delivery of the shrimp standard by mid 2013, and the combined standard for seriola and cobia is expected to be finalised before the year end. Certified volumes for the latter three species can be expected in 2014.