Unsustainable fish

Dr Martin Jaffa (Letters, 19 
August) accuses Don Staniford of running a “one-man crusade” against salmon farming. Dr Jaffa goes on to use figures for the amount of fish fed to pet cats to somehow justify the amount of wild fish fed to farmed salmon.

Don Staniford was just a lad in short trousers when I and many, many other people started campaigning against the floating factory fish farms which blight Scottish waters.

If Martin Jaffa thinks opposition to salmon farming is a “one-man crusade” his arithmetic isn’t very good.

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As for the amount of fish fed to pet cats, I’m afraid the good doctor is guddling red herrings. What myself, Don Staniford and others are concerned about is
the frequent use of the word “sustainable” in relation to salmon farming.

On more than one occasion during the past 12 months I have had to challenge the First Minister and other members of his government for describing salmon farming as sustainable.

The fact is that salmon farming is not sustainable, as the industry consumes a greater weight of wild caught fish than it produces in farmed fish. The industry is shy in producing figures but it is 
estimated that it can take between three to five tonnes of wild fish to produce one tonne of marketable product.

I do, however, agree with one statement from Dr Jaffa.

If you take into consideration the other adverse effects of salmon farming (pollution, use of chemicals, high levels of parasites, damage to wild salmon and sea trout stocks, routine shooting of seals) he is perfectly correct when he describes salmon farming as an “easy target”.

John F Robins

Save Our Seals Fund