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The Digby Neck, N.S., salmon hatchery would be a post-smolt hatchery, where fish are grown longer on land and released larger into the ocean. (CBC)

Cooke Aquaculture proposes $58M salmon hatchery on Digby Neck

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Friday, January 15, 2021, 07:00 (GMT + 9)

The following is an excerpt from an article published by CBC News:

Land-based hatchery would grow 3 million salmon per year, supply 13 fish farms

Cooke Aquaculture plans to spend $58.6 million building a salmon hatchery on Digby Neck, Nova Scotia., over the next five years.

Notice of the proposal from the Canadian salmon-farming giant was posted Wednesday by the Nova Scotia government.

The land-based hatchery would grow salmon from egg to smolt prior to release into the ocean for rearing in open-pen fish farms.

It's expected to produce three million fish per year and supply Cooke's 13 fish farm sites in Nova Scotia.

Project not tied to approval of Liverpool Bay expansion

The company said the project is not contingent on getting approval from the provincial Aquaculture Review Board for a major expansion at Liverpool Bay, N.S., where it has applied to add 46 pens and increase capacity to 1.8 million salmon.

Cooke's application for a 10-year licence for the salmon hatchery, through subsidiary Kelly Cove Salmon, is before the Nova Scotia Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture.

The hatchery project will undergo a 30-day public comment period prior to the minister making a decision. The comment period closes Feb. 12.

Growing salmon longer on land

Known as a post-smolt hatchery, the facility grows fish longer on land and releases them larger into the ocean, reducing time at sea where they are more susceptible to disease and weather.

Normally fish are grown to 125 grams at hatcheries; these salmon would be 500 grams before release.

"Growing them larger allows them to be larger and stronger and more healthy when they're in the ocean," Cooke spokesperson Joel Richardson told CBC News.

"This type of facility allows us to reduce fish handling, reduce the fish time at sea and reduce the days to market."

Planned for Centreville on Digby Neck, the hatchery would create 16 full-time jobs when completed. Construction is expected to take three years and generate 450 jobs and $26 million in wages.(continued...)

Author: Paul Withers / CBC News | Read the full article by clicking the link here

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