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Aquaculture is an increasingly important part of the Canadian economy, providing valuable employment opportunities in coastal and rural communities, and contributing to the world’s food supply.
Aquaculture accounts for 14% of total Canadian fisheries production, 33% of its value, and employs more than 16 thousand Canadians.
Canada ranks fourth in world production in Atlantic salmon, with Norway, Chile and the UK leading the way. British Columbia is the country’s top producer with about 80 active salmon farms and New Brunswick comes next with 70. Farmed salmon is B.C.’s number one agricultural export, and B.C. produces about two-thirds of Canada’s farmed salmon, and about 5% of the world’s annual production.
In 2006, the world consumed more than 140 million metric tons of fish (over 10 kg per person). By 2030, demand is estimated to rise by 70%. In North America alone, a rise of 40% is expected by 2010. To meet projected need, aquaculture will need to produce an additional 28.8 million metric tons every year (that’s 80.5 million metric tons total) just to maintain per capita fish consumption at current levels.
Mainstream Canada has the opportunity to be a world leader in the supply of healthy, nutritious and sustainable-farmed salmon to help meet this demand.