Unappetizing news re: Farmed Fish
It was only a matter of time before disease began sweeping through Chile's overcrowded, poorly designed and maintained salmon and trout farms. For years now Chilean fish farmers have jammed millions of fish into pens and poured on the antibiotics to keep them "healthy." Now strains of bacteria have built immunity, and a deadly virus -- infectious salmon anemia, known as the Isa virus -- is killing off fish in a total of 200 different "cultivation centers" in Chile.
Let's be clear: The virus cannot be transmitted to humans via consumption of infected fish. But what's going on in Chile, and in other fish farms around the world, sure shouldn't t make you hunger for farmed salmon tonight.
The Isa virus isn't the only challenge facing Chilean salmon farmers, who exported more than $2.4 billion worth of salmon in 2008. The salmon growers are heavily indebted to suppliers and banks, according to a recent report in the Wall Street Journal. They have an estimated $1.6 billion in liabilities and owe suppliers about $400 million for nets, cages and other gear.- Portland Oregonian