Nova Scotia has a new strategy for aquaculture development that will help efforts to grow a sustainable industry and create wealth in rural and coastal communities.
The strategy identifies and builds on four key pillars: farming responsibly, aquaculture engagement, regulatory safeguards, and jobs and the economy. Over the years, the government has heard many opinions on aquaculture development. The strategy is a balanced response.
It also includes doing a review of the feasibility of closed containment in Nova Scotia.
“Our strategy demonstrates our commitment to ensure aquaculture development is done in a way that protects the environment and traditional fisheries,” said Fisheries and Aquaculture Minister Sterling Belliveau. “There is a bright future for aquaculture in Nova Scotia and this strategy will guide us.”
The province’s aquaculture industry is one of the most diverse in the world, including many different species of finfish and shellfish, as well as Irish moss and other sea plants. It boasts the largest land-based production facility in the world and every county has a link to the industry.
Aquaculture is also a significant contributor to the rural and coastal community economies, worth about $50 million annually, creating about 750 direct and more than 1,000 indirect jobs.
“The Aquaculture Association of Nova Scotia is very pleased with the new aquaculture strategy,” said Bruce Hancock, executive director of the association. “Our members are proud of their responsible farming and they welcome the province’s efforts to raise the bar on operating standards. We are confident we can meet this challenge.
“We are also very pleased to see the government’s commitment to providing the right tools for small and medium-sized operators to grow their businesses in rural Nova Scotia.”
To read the strategy, visit http://gov.ns.ca/fish/NS-Aquaculture-Policy.pdf