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Safeway Considers New Salmon Source

VANCOUVER, British ColumbiaSafeway is in talks with AgriMarine Holdings to source farmed salmon from the company's closed containment aquaculture operation in Campbell River, British Columbia, according to an announcement from AgriMarine. The company said last week that it had signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Safeway, establishing “a framework for Safeway to commence a due diligence process leading to a definitive agreement for supply of Pacific Salmon.”

Environmental advocacy groups tend to view closed containment systems as a significantly more sustainable method of aquaculture than open-net cage farming. In open-net cage systems, fish waste can accumulate in a concentrated area surrounding the farm, escaped fish can spread disease and parasites to local wild fish populations, and antibiotics and chemical treatments applied to the farmed fish can pollute local waters.

Closed containment systems keep farmed fish separated from wild populations using walled tanks with their own waste collection and filtration systems.

In January, Safeway announced plans to partner with marine conservation group FishWise to create and implement a more comprehensive sustainable seafood policy.

“We have received positive initial feedback from Safeway who share our vision of making positive contributions for our oceans by changing the way salmon are farmed,” Richard Buchanan, chief executive officer of AgriMarine Holdings, said in the release.