With the global salmon farming industry's most effective tool against sea lice -- chemical treatments -- becoming less effective every year, a storm of R&D is leading to an array of new tools for controlling the sea lice scourge.
The new IntraFish Sea Lice Report provides a comprehensive analysis and understanding of current sea lice treatments.
In Norway, for example, the use of chemical treatments peaked in 2015 and was halved by 2017 as the industry has both implemented and stepped up the search for alternative solutions, said Kjell Maroni, R&D director for Aquaculture at the Norwegian Seafood Research Fund (FHF).
The same trend is taking place on farms in Chile, Scotland, Canada and anywhere where lice affects farming operations.
So which treatment options are working? That somewhat depends on which part of the world you are farming salmon.
The Norwegian industry, for example, has returned to the use of cleaner fish such as wrasse and lumpsucker, or lumpfish, that were previously deployed in the 1980s. An estimated 70 percent to 80 percent of Norway’s salmon farms now use these fish to control sea lice infestations.
Sea lice treatments in Canada’s Bay of Fundy, on the other hand, rely on biological treatments, the use of cleaner fish, and the deployment of water-temperature-control methods such as warmwater baths.
There are more than a handful of treatments being used or developed around the world and farmers are finding success combining a number of these treatments as part of an ongoing strategy of chemical and drug-free treatments.
The new IntraFish Sea Lice Report provides a comprehensive analysis and understanding of current sea lice treatments, detailing which treatments are deployed in each salmon farming country and by the sectors leading salmon farming companies.
The report also details the impact of sea lice on the bottom line of salmon farming companies and their reputations. It also details what countries and leading salmon farming companies are doing right now to address the issue, and looks at current strategies, research and innovations taking place in the sector.
The 75-page report report provides comprehensive information on:
- The history of sea lice vs. salmon
- How sea lice impact fish health
- Public perception impact on salmon farming’s reputation.
- The sea lice challenge – A country-by-country breakdown of the issue
- Innovations in tackling sea lice
- What the latest research on sea lice tells us
- Outlook: The next 5 -10 years
- Treatment strategies – A company-by-company breakdown
Farmed salmon is one of the most popular seafoods in the world. But for the industry to continue to grow and supply increasing global demand it will need to solve the sea lice challenge.