The Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) is an independent, international organization that sets standards for responsible and sustainable aquaculture practices. The ASC aims to promote environmentally and socially responsible seafood production by establishing criteria and certification programs for various aquaculture species, including salmon.
ASC Salmon certification is a specific program that focuses on sustainable salmon farming. The certification standards address key environmental and social aspects of salmon farming, ensuring that aquaculture operations meet rigorous criteria in areas such as:
Environmental impact: ASC Salmon certification requires farms to minimize their environmental footprint. This includes controlling water quality, reducing the use of chemicals, managing waste and effluents, and mitigating the impact on wild salmon populations.
Fish welfare: The standards emphasize the responsible handling and care of farmed salmon. This includes appropriate stocking densities, good fish health management practices, and measures to reduce stress and disease.
Feed and feeding practices: Certified farms are required to use responsibly sourced feed for their salmon. This includes minimizing the use of wild fish in feed and using sustainable and traceable ingredients.
Social responsibility: ASC Salmon certification addresses the social aspects of salmon farming, such as workers' welfare, fair labor practices, and community engagement. It ensures that farms operate ethically and contribute positively to local communities.
To achieve ASC Salmon certification, farms undergo a rigorous assessment process conducted by independent third-party auditors. The assessment includes on-site inspections, document reviews, and interviews with farm operators and stakeholders. Farms that meet all the requirements of the ASC Salmon standard are awarded the certification, which allows them to use the ASC logo on their products.
ASC Salmon certification provides several benefits:
Consumer confidence: The ASC label assures consumers that the salmon they are purchasing comes from farms that meet strict environmental and social standards.
Market access: Many retailers and seafood buyers prioritize sourcing certified sustainable seafood, including ASC Salmon. Certification opens doors to markets and customers that value sustainability.
Environmental protection: ASC Salmon certification promotes responsible farming practices that reduce the environmental impact of salmon aquaculture and protect the surrounding ecosystems.
Continuous improvement: The ASC certification program encourages farms to continually improve their practices by setting performance targets and requiring regular reassessment.
It's important to note that ASC Salmon certification is specific to salmon farming and is recognized internationally. To obtain detailed information about the ASC Salmon certification program, its specific requirements, and the certified farms, it is recommended to visit the official Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) website or contact ASC directly for the most accurate and up-to-date information.