Infectious Salmon Anaemia Confirmed in Nova Scotia

March 7, 2012: The Canadian Food Inspection Agency has confirmed infectious salmon anaemia at a commercial aquaculture facility in Nova Scotia.

Infectious salmon anaemia does not affect human health or food safety, but it does pose risks to fish health and the economy.

Protecting fish health is a top priority, and appropriate measures are being taken to prevent further disease spread.

A quarantine remains on the facility to control movements of people, vessels, equipment and fish onto or off of the site. As a precautionary disease control measure, the owner of the facility chose to euthanize two pens containing affected salmon when the disease was first suspected. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency will now order a third cage of salmon to be humanely destroyed and disposed of, with compensation paid to the owner.

The Agency will continue to monitor and test the rest of the salmon at the facility. If additional cases of infectious salmon anaemia are detected, more fish may be ordered destroyed.

Pens, cages and equipment will be cleaned and disinfected. Once cleaning and disinfecting is complete, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency will evaluate the facility to determine when the quarantine may be removed.

The measures being taken are consistent with international disease control guidelines for infectious salmon anaemia.

The response is being carried out in collaboration with Fisheries and Oceans Canada, the Province of Nova Scotia and the aquaculture industry.

The Government of Canada appreciates the proactive approach taken by the company following the suspect finding. Their actions are an excellent example of how the industry takes their responsibility for fish health and these situations seriously.

This finding does not change Canada’s status for infectious salmon anaemia. The disease is known to exist in the waters off Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick.

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