Consuming farm-raised salmon is both safe and healthy. This assertion is supported by food safety authorities across the world, and proved through our comprehensive monitoring program. We know some consumers may have concerns about farm-raised salmon containing environmental contaminants, pathogen bacteria or medicine residues. Our approach at Mowi is to be transparent and share information to help dispel myths about farm-raised salmon.
The safety of our consumers is our top priority. In connection with the production of farm-raised salmon, food safety hazards fall into three main categories: environmental contaminants; pathogen bacteria; and medicine use/residue. Environmental contaminants in our feed and fish are kept far below the safe limits (MRL’s) set by the food safety authorities around the world. In our monitoring program we include heavy metals, pesticides, GMOs, mycotoxins and dioxin/PCB. Pathogen bacteria are kept under control to prevent contamination in our products, both to ensure the safety of our own ready-to-eat products and to ensure that fish sold to commercial customers for onward processing is risk-free. Listeria monocytogenes is one of the potential food-borne pathogens in fish products which are consumed without prior heat treatment. Due to increased consumption of raw salmon in products such as sushi, it has become even more important to fully control the risk of listeria contamination.
Our approach to medicine use and medicine residue is very strict and is designed with an emphasis on disease prevention and fish welfare. Fish, like humans and other animals, might become ill and require intervention. Our fish health professionals use medicines only when other measures are not sufficient, or when fish welfare may be compromised. Any prescription is signed by a certified veterinarian or fish health professional, and the approval process is strictly controlled by the relevant authorities. Effective vaccinations have vastly reduce the need for antibiotics in most farming regions. If medicine does have to be used we comply with the medicine withdrawal periods set by the authorities, and carry out our own stringent monitoring to verify and document for our customers that the end-product is safe.
PRIORITIES GOING FORWARD
Maintaining the trust of consumers is a non-negotiable priority for our company. We will continue our comprehensive program to monitor the raw materials and feed used in our farming operations, to ensure that the level of environmental contaminants is far below the safe limits set by food safety authorities. At the same time, we will work to keep pathogen bacteria under control so that consumers eating our farm-raised salmon products can remain confident that they are safe. Through openness and transparency, we aim to provide evidence-based facts about our products which will help customers and consumers make informed choices.
However, should we come to a situation where tracking of our products will be necessary, we have during the last year developed a common traceability process for Mowi group. This process is then supported by Infor M3 Graphical Lot Tracker (GLT). In connection with the rollout of M3 in Mowi, GLT is now going to be implemented in all BUs. When fully implemented in 2019, Mowi will be the only salmon producer in the world with full traceability from breeding and feeding – through the full value chain until it reaches your plate.