VANCOUVER – A salmon farm operating off the west coast of Vancouver Island has to destroy more than half a million fish at significant financial losses after tests confirmed the presence of a virus.
Laurie Jensen of Mainstream Canada says test have confirmed the presence of the virus, known as IHN or infectious haematopoietic necrosis, at a site north of Tofino.
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency says while the virus poses risk to aquatic animal health and the economy, it does not affect human health or food safety.
Jensen says the company has begun to remove and cull about 560,000 Atlantic salmon from the site, and the fish are all less than a year old.
She says the site has been quarantined since earlier in the week, and while it’s too early to determine the economic impact she doesn’t expect any job losses.
Fish buyer and seller Todd Waterfield says when ready for market, Atlantic salmon fetch a wholesale prince ranging from $5.72 to about $7 per kilogram.