It's now official - salmon farming makes people sick! "Staff at Scottish Sea Farms site in Connel, left their posts on October 11 after feeling ill and coughing and vomiting," reports Fish Update (24 October). "One Scottish Sea Farms employee, who did not wish to be named, said the sickness had been ongoing for ‘two to three’ weeks."
Read article in full via "Scottish Sea Farms staff walk out over sickness"
[Photos from a visit to the Scottish Sea Farms processing plant in April 2012]
Scottish Sea Farms issued a statement this afternoon (26 October) via Fish Update:
In January 2012, BBC News reported that Scottish Sea Farms had been fined £333,335 following the deaths of two workers - that's around £166,700 each for the lives of Scottish Sea Farms worker Campbell Files and engineer Arthur Raikes.
Speaking after the conclusion of the case, HSE principal inspector Barry Baker told BBC News: "The deaths in this case should have been avoided - the risks should have been identified and a clear and safe system of work prepared."
A spokeswoman for Scottish Sea Farms told BBC News following the deaths in 2009: "It is with great sadness that Scottish Sea Farms can confirm an accident at our farm in Loch Creran, Argyll, has resulted in two fatalities and injury to a third colleague. Our immediate concern and condolences are for the families affected by this tragic accident. Scottish Sea Farms are co-operating fully with the Health and Safety Executive and relevant authorities in this matter."
Scottish Sea Farms have also been busy killing seals - over 50 during 2011 and the first three months of 2012.
Read more via "The Killing Farms"
In March 2012, the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) warned Scottish Sea Farms following inspection failures at the same processing plant in South Shian, Connel. "Your firm’s aquaculture farmed salmon appear to be adulterated, in that the products have been prepared, packed, or held under conditions whereby they may have been rendered injurious to health," warned the FDA's Division of Enforcement.
The FDA warning letter - known as a FDA Form 483 - also included:
The FDA warning letter concluded:
Read the FDA's warning letter to Scottish Sea Farms in full online here
"The FDA Form 483 notifies the company’s management of objectionable conditions," states the FDA's web-site. "Companies are responsible to take corrective action to address the cited objectionable conditions and any related non-cited objectionable conditions that might exist."
During a visit to the Scottish Sea Farms processing plant and salmon farm in Loch Creran in April 2012, the following photos were taken:
View more photos of the Scottish Sea Farms processing plant by a French photojournalist online here
Today's Daily Mail (25 October) also reported on the sickness at Scottish Sea Farms:
Download a PDF version of the Daily Mail article online here
The Oban Times (25 October) also reported on the sickness quoting one staff member who wanted to remain anonymous. "We don't want to be sick, we are all worried. We all have families and children."
Meanwhile, Scottish Sea Farms maintain their wholesome and healthy public image by claiming on their web-site that "the salmon quality is guaranteed – clean, healthy, everything it should be".
"Delicious food from safe hands" - really? I think I'd rather eat my own vomit than eat Scottish farmed salmon. Celebrity chef Nick Nairn, author of 'Nick Nairn's Top 100 Salmon Recipes', would disgaree. He visited the Scottish Sea Farms processing plant at the centre of the sickness scare in May 2012 as part of a "fact finding mission" (watch him praising "clean" and "pristine" Scottish salmon farming online here).
It's not clear if Mr. Nairn is so "impressed" with Scottish Sea Farms now or if he even bothered to check out all the facts including the FDA's warning letter regarding "adulterated" farmed salmon (found by simply via Googling "Scottish Sea Farms Processing Plant").
Xanthe Clay, food correspondent for The Daily Telegraph newspaper, was also duped during a visit to Scottish Sea Farms. "They process six to seven thousand tons of salmon a year for M&S, fresh, cooked and smoked," she wrote in December 2011 following a tour of the processing plant. "That includes 1,500 tons of smoked salmon in seven different varieties, a third of it for the Christmas period."
A Japanese chef with seven Michelin Stars, Chef Yoshihiro Murata, and Niall Howard, CEO from the Hakkasan restaurant group, were also schmoozed by Scottish Sea Farms in February 2012. “These distinguished visitors really know their food and we were thrilled that they were so impressed with Scottish Sea Farms’ salmon. The quality of Scottish salmon is well-known across the world and we were proud to show them our farm and facilities,” said Rory Conn, UK Sales and Commercial Manager for Scottish Sea Farms in a report published in The Fish Site.
The ugly truth is that consumers should avoid farmed salmon like the plague. Cheap and nasty farmed salmon leaves a bad taste in the mouth.
For more details on sick salmon farming read "Fish Farmageddon: The Infectious Salmon Aquacalypse"
This is not the first time that workers have become ill in a farmed salmon processing plant in Scotland. In 1995, the Lancet reported that "within 3 months of the opening of a salmon-processing plant in the UK, some workers complained of symptoms suggestive of occupational asthma."
The scientific paper - "Occupational asthma caused by automated salmon processing" - was published by a GP from the Tweeddale Medical Practice in Fort William (where the Norwegian-owned multinational Marine Harvest have a processing plant).
Here's a Marine Harvest processing plant in Norway:
And here's processing plant workers at a Marine Harvest factory in Norway:
In 2008, the FDA issued an "Enforcement Report" and recall for Marine Harvest Scotland's farmed salmon due to contamination with petroleum:
"Marine Harvest Scotland (Ltd), the fish supplier, said the diesel may have come from a well boat used to transport the fish from a farm to a processing plant," reported Breaking News in February 2008. "In a statement, Marine Harvest said: “Some batches of salmon from Marine Harvest Scotland, harvested in early February, have a risk of a petroleum taint causing an unpleasant taste."
The following chains withdrew products: Asda, Booths, Budgens, Co-op, Morrisons, Nisa-Today, Sainsbury’s, ShopRite, Somerfield and Tesco. "Sainsbury’s has been hit particularly hard by the contamination, recalling 18 of its products," reported Breaking News (February 2008). "In a statement yesterday the supermarket said: “Due to a potential taint in some salmon products from one of our suppliers, as a precautionary measure we have removed from sale a number of lines because the taint affects the taste. Sainsbury’s is committed to the highest standards and we can reassure our customers that there is no risk to health whatsoever from inadvertently eating affected products.”
BBC News (February 2008) reported:
The Guardian reported (February 2008): "Tesco said: "We want to reassure customers that there is no danger to their health from these products - they just won't taste particularly good."
Read more about Marine Harvest's sickly salmon on sale in supermarkets in Canada via "Marine Harvest Bugged by Flesh-Eating Parasite"
Scottish Sea Farms, like Marine Harvest and around 70% of the Scottish salmon farming industry, is Norwegian-owned.
Leroy came under fire earlier this year when the Green Warriors of Norway published a film exposing how "farmed salmon is the most poisonous food in the world".
The film - "Hazardous Norwegian Salmon Dinner" - also featured Leroy's use of toxic chemicals.
And footage of the shit under one of Leroy's salmon farms in Norway (watch video online here).
Scottish Sea Farms claim on their web-site to produce "one of the world's tastiest and healthiest foods".
Strangely, the Scottish Sea Farms web page on Lochmuir currently states that it is "awaiting content":
In fact, Lochmuir is a fake and a work of fiction invented to conjure up a wholesome image of Scottish salmon.
As The Scotsman newspaper reported in 2006:
Sadly, when all the peer-reviewed science detailing cancer-causing chemicals and other evidence such as the news above is taken into account, "sustainable", "healthy" or "nutritious" farmed salmon is more a work of fiction than fact. Salmon farming is quite literally sickening.
reported on health problems at salmon feed factories in Peru. According to the investigation by Andrew Walmsley and Jim Wickens:
A scientific paper published in 2010 also invesitgated the increasing risk of developing occupational allergy and respiratory disease such as asthma as a result of seafood handling and processing activities.
Another scientific paper published in 2008 also found that workers in a fish processing plant suffered from allergic symptoms, allergic sensitization, bronchial hyper-responsiveness and asthma.
Another review of "Occupational Seafood Allergy" in 2001 concluded that : "The prevalence of occupational asthma ranges from 7% to 36%, and for occupational protein contact dermatitis, from 3% to 11%."
The salmon farming industry is still reeling from the deaths in the Netherlands due to salmonella-infected smoked salmon. The Dutch health agency warned earlier this month that the death toll - linked to contaminated Norwegian farmed salmon in a Greek processing plant operated by Foppen - could reach 17 with 10,000 people infected.
Following the deaths of three people and the infected population rising to 950 victims, the Dutch media reported last week that one hundred people were now seeking compensation. "Foppen Pays Salmonella Victims of Salmon" reported (20 October) NU.
Dutch TV also reported from outside Foppen's processing plant in the Netherlands. "Damage salmon salmonella victims compensated" reported ZIE TV (20 October. "Victims of salmonella infected salmon get their damages compensated. That commitment has injury specialist Yme Drost received from the insurer of visfabrikant Foppen, he told Saturday" (Translation via Google Translate).
More background via "Sicko Salmon - ABC News on "Horrible" Norwegian Farmed Salmon"