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Public Embrace Chance To Visit Salmon Farms

CANADA - As the annual British Columbia (BC) Salmon Farmers Association tour season reaches its midway point, space is already nearly full through to autumn.

The weekly tours - which run each Thursday from July to mid-September - have only a couple spots left in August, with the best chance of available space in the final few weeks.

"It's been another year of great tours and lots of public interest," said David Minato, member and community relations co-rodinator for the BCSFA.

"People really appreciate the opportunity to get out on the water, visit an operational farm, meet the people working there and ask any questions they have."

The BCSFA and its members started the tour program five years ago as a way to provide more information to the general public about their operations. It's been growing in popularity - with many dates selling out early, even though the early summer was plagued by cloudy weather.

"There's a wide range of people interested in these tours: from locals who want to learn more to tourists visiting the area, educator to family and friends of farmers - it's great to be able to give them a hands-on experience where they can learn how our farms are run," said Mr Minato.

Tours depart from Discovery Launch Water Taxis in Campbell River at 9.00 am and last about four hours. The boat ride takes visitors through the Seymour Narrows - offering beautiful scenery and the chance to see marine wildlife. This year, they've spotted seals, whales, dolphins and more.

Tours include lunch and cost $50 per person. Bookings are being taken now - to reserve a spot, phone David Minato at the BCSFA (250) 286-1636 x224.

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