Copper-Mesh Update in Canada with Cermaq (formerly Mainstream, Canada)

By Bob Dwyer
Associate Director for Environment in the Health, Environment and Sustainable Development (HESD) Initiative – International Copper Association

Cermaq Canada’s Plover Point farm on Vancouver Island has been using copper-alloy nets since 2012. Video and underwater photography of the copper-alloy nets can be seen on the Cermaq website news room. Water tests have shown that the copper-alloy mesh does not increase the amount of copper in the surrounding ocean and that copper mesh provides a permanent antifouling performance. Cermaq reports they are the first company in Canada to try the new copper-mesh technology, and it is working well. The first harvest of Atlantic salmon from these copper-alloy pens occurred in December 2014. Cermaq is now using copper-mesh pens for a second growth cycle.

Other benefits of copper-alloy mesh include:

  • Its resistance to storm damage. Copper-alloy mesh is longer-lasting than traditional netting.
  • Copper-alloy mesh reduces predator attacks and fish escapes.
  • It stays naturally clean, reducing drag and maintaining cage volume.
  • Decreases impact of pathogens and parasites, as monitored by famers.
  • Supports sustainable fish farming and is 100% recyclable.
  • Minimizes maintenance costs and efforts.

Additional information about copper-alloy mesh and Cermaq Canada:

Cermaq Canada is a salmon farming company in British Columbia, Canada and is
part of Cermaq, an international salmon farming business with operations in Canada, Chile and Norway. Cermaq is a fully-owned subsidiary of Mitsubishi Corporation. Cermaq Canada produces approximately 25,000 metric tons of fresh, farmed Atlantic salmon annually at 27 sea sites around Vancouver Island.

Read More about Cermaq’s history and focus on sustainable aquaculture.

The copper-alloy pens at the Cermaq Canada Plover Point farm were assembled and installed in December 2012 at Plover Point.