Putting the cart before the horse on organic fish

For over a decade, the National Organic Program (NOP) has solicited public input regarding what organic fish farms (aquaculture) should entail.  Center for Food Safety has been clear in its expectations of organic fish farming.  We absolutely oppose allowing aquaculture in open ocean-based facilities because escapes into the wild are inevitable and farmed fish can carry diseases and parasites that would disrupt the ocean ecology near the facility.  Migratory fish, such as salmon, should be prohibited in fish farms because caging salmon severely inhibits their natural behavior of swimming long distances to spawn in inland waters.
 
It is clear that not every form or method of fish farming should be considered “organic.”  The public has submitted tens of thousands of comments urging the NOP to create organic aquaculture regulations that reflect the principles of organic. Unfortunately, the NOP has yet to respond to our call, and has not issued final rules.  Now, those wanting to develop the organic fish farming industry have requested the approval of synthetic feed additives to move the process along.

Acting on these requests for feed additives before regulations governing organic fish farming are in place puts the cart before the horse.  The type of feed to be permitted in organic aquaculture cannot possibly be determined without knowing whether the system is open or closed or what types of fish are permitted. Without that information, it’s also impossible to determine the environmental impacts of any feed additives.
 
Sign the petition to tell the NOSB to wait until regulations have been finalized before voting to permit or deny any requests for the use of synthetic materials in organic aquaculture systems.

Petition text:


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