California Set to Regulate 'Fish Farming'

The Fish Site
by The Fish Site
18 May 2006, at 1:00am

CALIFORNIA - State Senator Joe Simitian has announced that Senate Bill 201 (SB 201), a bill to regulate aquaculture (also known as fish farming) along California's coast, has been approved by the Legislature and as of report time it awaits the governor's signature. Simitian said he introduced the bill because of concerns about the fish farming industry's potential impact on "our coastal environment and economy, as well as the public's health and safety. The standards are rigorous, but attainable," Simitian said. "My hope is that these standards will be a model for other states, and for the nation. "The growth of California's fish farming industry presents opportunities and challenges," Simitian said. "The industry needs to meet the demands of consumers' appetite for fish, but it shouldn't do that at the cost of our environment or the safety of the food we put on the dinner table. SB 201 sets much needed standards so that the fish farming industry can grow safely and responsibly." Fish farmed in pens are often exposed to chemicals, overfed, swim in waste and spread disease and parasites. They can also escape and breed with wild fish, causing harmful effects on the marine ecosystem. While fish farming is the world's fastest growing food-producing industry, there are no comprehensive standards to guide its growth. Source: TheLog