I had to laugh at a statement made by Alexander McCowan in the August 27 restaurant review. Referring to an Alaskan wild salmon dish he had ordered, he states, “the Americans have managed their salmon fisheries so much better than the Europeans”.
And yet it was reported only three days previously that thousands of Atlantic salmon escaped into Pacific waters from a net holding 305,000 of the fish, at a farm in Washington state.
Atlantic salmon are listed as an invasive species in Washington State, yet are farmed in the millions. In the late 1990s, some 600,000 Atlantic salmon had escaped into the Pacific in three years. They can interbreed and spread disease among wild populations.
Just as in Europe, these farmed fish are infested with salmon lice; antibiotics and pesticides are the norm. The farms have been described by a former University of East Anglia scientist and expert as ‘toxic toilets’. Hydro-delousing and other methods often kill the fish themselves.
Thus, there is no basis for claiming that American industrial breeding and raising salmon is superior to that in Europe; they are both engaging in an unsustainable and environmentally destructive practice.
Patricia Radnor Kyriacou, Limassol