Farmers deny cod isn't Organic

The Fish Site
by The Fish Site
16 February 2007, at 12:00am

UK - Accusations in the national press that organically farmed cod are being held in "horrifying conditions" were yesterday dismissed as "ill informed" by the company behind the venture.

The Evening Standard and Channel 4 News reported that a government adviser on organic food, as well as the Soil Association, were concerned about the amount of lighting being used in cod farming.

Johnson Seafarms refuted the allegations yesterday (Thursday) saying the Evening Standard had not done its homework and had even failed to contact the company.

And the Soil Association's aquaculture development officer Peter Bridson said the comments made by the organisation's former chairman Lawrence Woodward did not represent the organisation's position.

Managing director Karol Rzepkowski said had the Evening Standard contacted him he would have been able to tell them that the use of light was an approved method by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA).

In the story, Catherine Fookes, a member of the government's advisory board on organic food, is quoted as saying that she had three "grave concerns".

"The first is the continuous use of light and what effect this has on animal welfare. The second is the effect this has on the flora and fauna around in the sea, and the third is the effect on carbon emissions from powering the lights," she said.

Light on the cages is being used to create the impression of a never-ending summer, which prevents the fish from maturing and spawning.

Source: Shetland Marine News