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New Zealand salmon producer attains global certification

26 March 2013

New Zealand salmon producer attains global certification

Attaining an internationally accepted aquaculture sustainability certification confirms NZ King Salmon’s world-class environmental standards the company says.

The South Island-based business has been confirmed as a sustainable salmon producer through achieving the Global Aquaculture Alliance’s Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) certification.

The certification covers NZ King Salmon’s entire current operations - five sites and three production facilities in Marlborough and Nelson. The company’s new sites awarded following the recent Environmental Protection Authority hearings will be audited as they come on stream.

Certification examines farm compliance issues such as community property rights and relations, worker relations, the environment, fish management and welfare, wildlife interactions and supply storage and disposal.

On the production side, it addresses management practices such as quality and staff, environment and food safety and verification and traceability.

NZ King Salmon CEO Grant Rosewarne says the BAP certification confirms the company is doing what it says it has been doing.

“Given the high standards we set ourselves compliance was achievable without a great deal of change to our current processes and procedures,” Mr Rosewarne says. “Corrective actions following audit were limited and indicative of a sound operation with only minor tweaks required.

“We’re very pleased with this certification. We can carry the BAP certification mark on our packaging and that gives consumers comfort knowing we are managing our activities in an environmentally sensitive and acceptable way,” he says.

Mr Rosewarne says the company did considerable preliminary work on researching which was the best global standard.

“We came to the conclusion the BAP certification was one of the best suited to the New Zealand situation which differs from most other territories in terms of isolation from disease and the King salmon species we farm.”

Mr Rosewarne says the company’s operations were audited by an experienced Australian-based certifier who is contracted to the GAA. Audits will be carried out annually.

“This is obviously important in all markets but especially so offshore – the US is an example - where some customers will take product from a certified producer in preference to others.”

He says traceability is a very big part of BAP certification. “It interconnects links in the aquaculture seafood production chain, assuring purchasers that all steps in the process were taken in compliance with environmental, social and food safety standards.”

Mr Rosewarne says the process cost “tens of thousands of dollars” in fees as well as a “considerable” time commitment from senior management, farm managers and processing facility staff.

“But we believe it has been well worth the effort,” he says.

Further detail on the GAA’s BAP standards can be found here.


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