B.C. Day Success Story: Homegrown Industry on Pace to Shatter Export Records, Creating Jobs in Coastal Communities and Opportunity for First Nations

Jul 29, 2016 4:30 PM ET

CAMPBELL RIVER, B.C., July 29, 2016 /3BL Media/ – As residents throughout the province celebrate the B.C. Day long weekend, a homegrown industry is boosting B.C.’s exports by putting fish on dinner plates at a record-setting pace.

Recently released data from Stats Canada (January to May 2016) shows exports of farm-raised salmon to key Asian markets is on a record setting pace in 2016, with many markets already eclipsing previous annual volumes.

“Boosting B.C. exports to Asia is a point of pride for communities and First Nations that work in and support the salmon farm industry,” said Jeremy Dunn, Executive Director, BC Salmon Farmers Association. “We recently hosted 30 international buyers at the BC Seafood Festival in June, so it’s great to see our sustainable, healthy product on more plates in Asia.”

Rapidly growing markets for B.C. farm-raised salmon include Taiwan and South Korea.

“Overall our sales to Asia are doing very well, thanks in part to excellent quality and B.C.'s strategic location, which allows us to get fresh salmon to market in half the time than any other major salmon producing country,” said Nick DiCarlo, Sales Manager for Cermaq Canada. “There is a strong global demand for salmon and we can boost B.C.’s exports further if provided the opportunity to carefully grow the industry.”

“As a global producer we have the advantage of having our own sales team living in the region and this, along with excellent air logistics, has helped us to quickly reach the right customers,” said Dave Mergle, Managing Director for Ocean Quality North America. “Our customers really like farmed salmon from British Columbia and we see much future growth ahead.”


January to May 2016 export numbers of whole fresh farm-raised Atlantic salmon (Source: Statistics Canada CATSNET Analytics):

  • Exports to Japan are on pace to double in 2016, with farmers already reaching 97% of the total export volume for 2015.
  • Exports to Taiwan for 2016 have already exceeded the 2015 total.
  • Exports to South Korea are up 10-fold over 2015 numbers, with over 29,000 kg exported so far this year.
  • B.C. exported a record 54.4 million kilograms of farm-raised salmon to 11 countries in 2015
  • Key markets such as China and the United States are on-par or ahead of 2015 exports.
  • China is now B.C.’s second most important market, next to the United States; the U.S. has historically been the sector’s primary export market and remains so.

Salmon farming has a total economic impact of $1.1 billion in British Columbia and accounts for more than 5,000 total jobs. Salmon farmers are working closely with coastal First Nations and have 20 economic impact benefit agreements in place, accounting for 78% of all salmon raised in B.C.

For more information visit BCSalmonFarmers.ca