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Chile salmon industry plans joint effort to combat SRS, other challenges

International press
04 of August 2016

Skretting says Pincoy program brings together industry expertise to combat Chile salmon industry’s main challenges.

The Pincoy program was designed for companies operating in different cycles of the salmon industry to combine expertise and come up with solutions to combat salmonid rickettsial syndrome (SRS) and the industry’s other big challenges, Skretting country manager Ronald Barlow said in a statement.

“There is no one unique solution to combat outbreaks of SRS and in fact the threat of the illnesses will always be present,” Barlow said. “For this reason we’ve invited partners in the industry that bring expertise in the distinct stages of the productive system to participate in this collaborative project.”

Pharmaceutical companies including Centrovet and Pharmaq are partners in the Pincoy scheme, as are feed suppliers such as AquaGen and Blue Genomics and producers including Cermaq.

Pincoy will complement Cermaq’s own monitoring for pathogens and bring a different perspective from strategic partners to find solutions to the SRS problem, said Cermaq’s head of Chilean operations, Francisco Miranda.

Norway’s Pharmaq, which is testing its vaccine on 20 million salmon, said it will participate in sustainable solutions for the salmon industry, which used the highest amount of antibiotics ever in 2015 to combat the disease that weakens the fish and makes them vulnerable to other illnesses.

SRS is a bigger challenge to the Chilean salmon industry than in other producer countries and has added almost a dollar to the cost of producing a kilo of salmon, according to Alfredo di Tello, the head of Intesal, the technology arm of producer association. The use of antibiotics to combat the illness and also come under the scrutiny of environmentalists while top US club retailer chain Costco stopped buying Chilean salmon because of this.

A group of scientists this year unveiled a mapping of the salmon genome in a study paid for by the global salmon industry to boost the research & development into problems that affect salmon aquaculture.

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